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Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what research she has evaluated on the relative (a) clinical and (b) cost-effectiveness of (i) the Heaf skin test, (ii) the Mantoux skin test and (iii) interferon-gamma blood test for the identification of (A) latent and (B) active TB infection. 
The sole supplier of United Kingdom licensed purified protein derivative (PPD) has ceased production of tuberculin PPD for heaf testing. Mantoux testing has now replaced the heaf test as the standard method of tuberculin skin testing.
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The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) extensively reviewed this area as part of the development of new guidelines on the clinical management of tuberculosis, including interferon gamma blood test for the identification of latent and active tuberculosis infection. This work has been published in draft form as part of an open public consultation. NICE clinical guidelines on the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of tuberculosis are due out in March.
Mr. Bone: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) which hospital trusts have indicated to her that they will not be able to meet the six-month maximum waiting time for in-patient treatment during 2006; 
(2) what assessment she has made of the changes in waiting times for operations since the Government stated that no patient would have to wait more than six months for an NHS in-patient operation. 
The six month standard came into place as at 31 December 2005. The first statistics measuring performance against this target show that 48 patients were waiting longer than six months for inpatient admission at the end of December 2005. Detailed figures by trust are available on the Department's website at: www.performance.doh.gov.uk/waitingtimes/2005/q3/qf01_y00.html.
Mr. Bone: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the average waiting time was for an NHS in-patient operation in (a) 2001, (b) 2002, (c) 2003, (d) 2004 and (e) 2005 in (i) England and (ii) each NHS hospital trust; and what the figures are to date in 2006. 
Jane Kennedy [holding answer 13 February 2006]: Data on average waiting times for the number of patients waiting for in-patient admission as at 31 December in each year has been placed in the Library.