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Ms Rosie Winterton [holding answer 12 December 2005]: I will be having discussions with internet service providers, through the Internet Service Providers Association, in the new year to discuss the issue of websites and chat rooms that make information available about suicide.
To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much has been spent by her Department on
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taxi travel in the 200506 financial year; and what proportion of such travel was undertaken in each nation and region of the UK, including London. 
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Mr. Byrne [holding answer 19 December 2005]: The Secretary of State announced on 1 December 2005 that teams of financial and management experts are to be sent to support the strategic health authorities (SHAs), national health service trusts and primary care trusts that have the biggest delivery problems.
An initial assessment is under way to ensure that the organisations that are forecasting the most significant deficits, expected to number 63, have financial control and there are an agreed set of actions to restore financial balance.
Following the initial assessment, the SHA, the Department and the organisation will agree on a tailored package of turnaround support. The chief executives of the most challenged organisations will then be supported in delivering turnaround by turnaround teams.
The turnaround teams will support the NHS in identifying opportunities to deliver services with greater cost-effectiveness and to make financial savings. They will help the local NHS ensure that the NHS delivers both its key targets and financial balance.
[holding answer 20 December 2005]: The current outpatient waiting time target only applies to patients waiting for their first outpatient appointment with a consultant following a general practitioner or
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dental practitioner referral. It does not include follow-up appointments, consultant to consultant referrals or appointments with non-consultants.
Dr. Kumar: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the average waiting time for an appointment to see a general practitioner was in (a) England, (b) the Tees Valley and (c) Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland in the last period for which figures are available. 
Mr. Byrne: The requested data are not collected or held centrally. Since 2001, data has been collected each month from primary care trusts and general practitioners (GPs) on the availability of access to a general practitioner. This data shows whether access is or is not available in line with The NHS Plan" target that patients should be able to be seen within 48 hours but do not provide information on actual waiting times. Overwhelmingly patients are able to see a GP within 48 hours if they wish.
Mr. Marsden: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the average waiting times were from general practitioner referral to receipt of counselling services in (a) Blackpool, (b) Lancashire and (c) England in each of the last five years for which figures are available. 
Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the answer of 24 November 2005, Official Report, column 2300W, on waiting times, if she will break the figures down into (a) those admitted, (b) those transferred and (c) those discharged within four hours of arrival in an accident and emergency department since 200203. 
Mr. Byrne: Information is not collected on waiting times in accident and emergency (A&E) departments broken down by the reason for leaving A&E. We only collect total time spent in A&E from arrival to departure.
Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many winter excess deaths there have been in each of the last 25 years (a) in total and (b) as a percentage of the elderly population, broken down by region; and what recent measures the Government have taken to reduce the number of winter excess deaths. 
Excess winter deaths are available by the Government Office Regions since 199192, and are shown in the table. They represent the excess deaths which occurred in the four months December to March, compared with the number expected if the average rate of the four months either side of the winter months applied.
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|Government Office Regions in England||199192||199293||199394||199495||199596||199697||199798|
|Yorkshire and Humber||2,660||1,410||1,980||1,670||2,510||2,750||1,550|
|Yorkshire and Humber||1,320||1,060||1,120||1,100||1,530||1,800||910|
|Government Office Regions in England||199899||19992000||200001||200102||200203||200304|
|Yorkshire and Humber||2,870||2,720||1,510||1,530||1,220||1,600|
|Yorkshire and Humber||1,890||1,900||1,060||1,300||1,010||1,100|
|Regions in England||199192||199293||199394||199495||199596||199697||199798|
|Yorkshire and Humber||0.1||0.0||0.0||0.0||0.1||0.1||0.0|
|Yorkshire and Humber||1.8||1.4||1.4||1.3||1.8||2.1||1.0|
|Regions in England||199899||19992000||200001||200102||200203||200304|
|Yorkshire and Humber||0.1||0.1||0.0||0.0||0.0||0.0|
|Yorkshire and Humber||2.1||2.1||1.1||1.4||1.1||1.2|
The Keep Warm Keep Well Campaign, launched this year with the flu immunisation campaign, comprising leaflet and helpline based advice on what simple measures older people can take to preserve their health in winter time.
Direct encouragement to the national health service to increase further the many fuel poverty reduction partnerships between the NHS, local authorities (LAs) and, for example, EAGA. These lead to primary care staff being trained and supported, simplified referral routes and rapid response from Warm Front and others. A large proportion of referrals to Warm Front originate from the NHS.
Funding the evaluation of an important collaboration between the NHS and the Met Office, testing the value of health forecasting in the management and self-management of those with chronic chest disease, many of whom are older people.
Helping to set up the health, housing and fuel poverty forum in March 2005 to raise the profile of cold, damp homes, and to mainstream the many innovative activities the NHS is engaged in to address this issue.
Establishing the £60 million partnerships for older people projects fund, against which LAs and their partners have been bidding this year. The focus of these projects is on improving outcomes for older people through preventive interventions. Fuel poverty reduction forms a part of several of the short listed bids.
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