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26 Oct 2005 : Column 437W—continued


Ambulance Service Medal

Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether she plans to nominate ambulance personnel for the Queen's Ambulance Service Medal following the performance of the service during the London bombing on 7 July. [20415]

Jane Kennedy: The Government recognises the enormous contribution of our emergency services, including London Ambulance Service national health service Trust, on 7 July 2005 and is exploring a number of options for ensuring that this is properly recognised.

Asylum Seekers

Mr. Clegg: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment she has made of the likely effects on public health of asylum seekers being unable to access NHS services apart from accident and emergency. [20445]

Jane Kennedy [holding answer 21 October 2005]: Primary care trusts have a duty to ensure that asylum seekers, as with all members of the public, can access national health service services. A person who has formally applied for asylum is entitled to NHS treatment, both primary and secondary care, without charge, for as long as their application, including appeals, is under consideration. This includes registering with a general practitioner and receiving treatment in a hospital.

Communicable Disease Control

Steve Webb: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans she has (a) to amend the powers exercised as a last resort over people, premises and property in circumstances posing a risk to public health and (b) to change the reserve powers available to her in the event that an outbreak of communicable disease is being mishandled. [20030]

Caroline Flint [holding answer 20 October 2005]: The Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984 contains a range of powers in relation to the control of infectious
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disease. As to plans to review this legislation, I refer the hon. Member to my reply of 24 October 2005, Official Report, columns 189–90W.

Emergency powers under part two of the Civil Contingencies Act are designed to allow the Government to respond quickly and effectively to the most serious emergencies where existing powers prove to be insufficient. They are capable of being used in the event of a range of emergencies, including those involving threats to public health, but only where existing powers would be ineffective. Their use is a last resort option—other approaches, such as bringing forward new legislation in an accelerated timeframe, would be considered first.

The Act allows the making of temporary legislation—emergency regulations—in exceptional circumstances and only where the robust tests and safeguards in the Act are met. Such temporary legislation may amend existing powers or grant new ones where this is necessary and proportionate. In order to meet these tests any use of emergency powers must be tailored to the specific circumstances at hand. It is therefore not possible, and would be potentially misleading, to comment on any specific measures that could be taken using emergency powers in the event of a public health emergency—it would depend on the specific circumstances prevailing at the time.

Contaminated Surgical Instruments

Mrs. Maria Miller: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many hospital acquired infections were caused by contaminated surgical instruments in the last period for which figures are available. [19391]

Jane Kennedy [holding answer 21 October 2005]: Information on the number of hospital acquired infections caused by contaminated surgical instruments is not available.

Down's Syndrome

Julia Goldsworthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what research has been undertaken into the effects of complementary therapies for people with Down's syndrome. [18311]

Jane Kennedy: The Department has not funded any such research.

Influenza Vaccinations

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the take-up rate for influenza vaccinations for each (a) strategic health authority and (b) primary care trust in London was in each year since 2002–03. [18653]

Jane Kennedy: This information requested is shown in the table.
Percentage of 'flu vaccine uptake in people aged 65 years and over by strategic health authority (SHA) and primary care trust (PCT)

North East London SHA
Barking and Dagenham PCT667172
Havering PCT717373
City and Hackney PCT535559
Newham PCT606765
Tower Hamlets PCT606171
Redbridge PCT7171
Waltham Forest7172
Mean SHA626769
North Central London SHA
Barnet PCT626666
Enfield PCT676665
Haringey PCT617270
Camden PCT595864
Islington PCT566062
Mean SHA616465
South East London SHA
Bexley PCT677168
Greenwich PCT596162
Bromley PCT686970
Lambeth PCT495359
Southwark PCT495454
Lewisham PCT565861
Mean SHA586162
South West London SHA
Kingston PCT677072
Richmond and Twickenham PCT676973
Sutton and Merton PCT707071
Wandsworth PCT637066
Croydon PCT656668
Mean SHA666970
North West London SHA
Ealing PCT736568
Hounslow PCT667471
Hammersmith and Fulham PCT545661
Hillingdon PCT606670
Brent PCT616971
Harrow PCT697273
Westminster PCT515562
Kensington and Chelsea PCT616472
Mean SHA626569

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London Ambulance Service

Mr. Pelling: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what role primary care trust patients' forums will undertake in the pan-London review of the performance of the London Ambulance Service. [17578]

Jane Kennedy: At the present time, the performance of the London Ambulance Service (LAS) will continue to be monitored by the LAS patients' forum. Primary care trust patients' forums will contribute to that review as they have been doing.


Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what funding has been made available for research into lupus from (a) the Medical Research Council and (b) the Department of Health's Research and Development Directorate in each year since 1997. [18364]

Jane Kennedy: The main part of the Department's expenditure on health research is allocated to and managed by national health service organisations. Details of individual projects supported in the NHS, including a significant number concerned with lupus, can be found on the national research register at
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The Medical Research Council (MRC) is an independent body, funded by the Department of Trade and Industry via the Office of Science and Technology. The MRC's portfolio of research relating to the causes and treatment of inflammatory disease has included the following expenditure specifically on lupus:
Amount (£)

Market Research

Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much has been paid to (a) opinion leader research and (b) all market research companies by her Department in each of the last eight years. [18830]

Jane Kennedy: A list of expenditure on market research in each of the last eight years could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Medical Errors/Incidents

Sarah Teather: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many (a) medical errors and (b) reportable incidents involving (i) drugs and (ii) equipment in NHShospitals in London there were in each year since 1997. [16907]

Jane Kennedy: It is only possible to provide data on the number of reportable incidents involving drugs and equipment. The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) operates national systems for the collection and monitoring information of adverse events related to drugs and devices. Both systems rely upon voluntary reporting of suspected adverse events by health professionals. Manufacturers with respect to devices and marketing authorisation holders with respect to drugs have statutory obligations to report suspected adverse events.

Table one shows the total number of suspected adverse drug reaction (ADR) reports received via the voluntary yellow card scheme from 1997 to 2005 by year from London hospitals.
Table 1: Reports received via the yellow card scheme from London hospitals


(26) Data up to 10 October 2005.

The MHRA pharmacovigilance system does not differentiate between national health service and private hospitals. The number of reports received from London hospitals, therefore, includes day hospitals, private hospitals and hospitals that may now be closed. It is
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important to note that a report of an adverse drug reaction does not necessarily mean that it was caused by the drug. Many factors have to be taken into account in assessing causal relationships, including temporal association, the possible contribution of concomitant medication and the underlying disease.

Table two shows the number of medical device related adverse incident reports submitted to the MHRA from the NHS in London on a voluntary basis between mid-1999 and 2005. Information obtainable from electronic records created prior to mid-1999 does not distinguish reports from the NHS in London.
Table 2: Medical device related adverse incident reports submitted to the MHRA from the NHS in London

Number of reports received from London hospitals

(27) Data up to 12 October 2005

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