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Mr. Byrne: First ideas for a stronger local national health service in Essex have been developed locally by Essex Strategic Health Authority in collaboration with partner organisations and stakeholder groups.
These plans have now been submitted to the Department. After initial assessments, all options for the reorganisation of the NHS in Essex (and indeed all other areas) shall be subject to a full, statutory public consultation. No decisions on the final form of new NHS structures will be taken until after these consultations have been completed.
Caroline Flint: Information on the amount spent by the national health service on obesity management is not held centrally. However, the National Audit Office report, Tackling Obesity in England", published in 2001, estimated that the direct cost to the NHS of treating obesity and its consequences in 1998 was £480 million. As part of its inquiry into obesity, the Health Select Committee estimated that in 2002 the direct cost to the NHS was between £990 million and £1,225 million.
The estimated average time waited for first out-patient appointment following general practitioner written referrals for Dartford, Gravesham and Swanley primary care trust (commissioner based) is shown in the table.
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|Quarter ended (June)||Median (weeks)|
|Average age of qualified paediatric nursing staff||37||38||39||39||39||41||41||41|
|Registered sick children's nurse||34||35||36||36||36||36||36||36|
|Other 1st level||34||35||36||36||36||37||36||37|
|Other 2nd level||39||40||41||41||42||44||42||43|
Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much has been spent by the Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals Trust on sending confidential patient records to South Africa for processing. 
Surrey and Sussex Strategic Health Authority has advised that the trust has followed guidelines published by the information commissioner and the European Union relating to the transfer of personal data outside the EU.
The Government aim to reach pregnant smokers through the ongoing partners" education campaign, which provides information about smoking, the benefits to the health of both mother and baby in quitting, and how partners and families can provide support.
The national health service stop smoking services were allocated an additional £6 million in 200102 to 200203 to target smoking in pregnancy and to provide specialist advisers to help pregnant smokers to quit. Pregnant women can also access our free, dedicated helpline for all smokers on 0800 169 0 169 and the specific helpline for pregnant women smokers on 0800 169 9 169. Local services are expected to liaise with Sure Start to ensure the most effective delivery of service to the women who need it most.
Drug misuse among pregnant women is identified through ante-natal care from their midwife or local general practitioner. Where identified, an assessment is carried out and the appropriate treatment and support arranged both during and post pregnancy. To deliver high quality care services for pregnant drug users, there is a co-ordinated approach between drug services, maternity services and children's health and social care services. Pregnant women are a vulnerable group as far as drugs misuse is concerned and where appropriate will be given top priority.
Obstetric departments are advised to develop good links with local drug specialists and GPs and the local social services. All local statutory authorities should have a written policy about drug misusing parents and all professionals involved should be aware of this policy.
To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what criteria were used in selecting the Progress Educational Trust to conduct an online consultation on behalf of the Department of Health as part of its review of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology ActA Public Consultation; how much funding has been allocated to the Trust for this purpose; and when she expects to receive the results; 
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(2) what assessment she made of possible conflict of interest for the Progress Educational Trust in asking it to conduct an online consultation on behalf of her Department as part of its review of Human Fertilisation and Embryology ActA Public Consultation; 
(3) which organisations were considered in deciding who should conduct an online consultation on behalf of her Department as part of its review of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology ActA Public Consultation. 
Caroline Flint: The Department launched a public consultation on the review of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990 on 16 August 2005. The closing date for responses is 25 November 2005. The Department is keen to receive responses from as many individuals and organisations as possible. In order to encourage this we have set up an online consultation response facility on the Department's website. We have not asked anyone to conduct this online consultation on behalf of the Department.
Progress Educational Trust is a voluntary organisation which aims to increase public awareness and engagement on issues in assisted reproduction and human genetics. Progress has applied for, and been awarded, a number of grants through the Department's scheme of grants for voluntary sector organisations, known as Section 64 funding. Progress is currently in receipt of £11,210 to host an online discussion forum to encourage public discussion and debate on the issues raised by the Government's review of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990.
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