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27 Mar 2006 : Column 778W—continued

Anti-TNF Treatments

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to her answer of 13 March 2006, Official Report, columns 2027–8W, if she will (a) collate and (b) publish information on primary care trusts which have not yet met the requirements to fund National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence-approved anti-TNF treatments; and if she will make a statement. [61297]

Mr. Byrne: We do not collect information on funding provided by strategic health authorities, or primary care trusts, for specific treatments.

Health bodies are obliged to fund, from general allocations, anti-TNF treatment for those with severe rheumatoid arthritis who meet the clinical guidelines set by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence.
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Arm's Length Bodies

Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many arm's length bodies have been (a) established and (b) dissolved by her Department since 1997; and what the total costs of establishment or dissolution was in each case. [60398]

Mr. Byrne: The information requested on the number of arm's length bodies (ALBs) established and dissolved by the Department since 1997 is shown in the table. Information on the major costs associated with the closure and setting up of bodies would form part of the relevant bodies' accounts but would not normally be designated as such. This information cannot therefore be provided in the form sought.
The number of ALBs set up and abolished by the Department between 1997 and 2006

Number of ALBs at start of yearNumber of ALBs set up in yearNumber of ALBs abolished in yearNumber of ALBs at end of year
Projected position as at
1 April 2006

1.ALBs are defined here as executive agencies, executive non-departmental public bodies and special health authorities.
2.The numbers include a significant number of successor bodies for bodies being merged.

Avian Influenza

Lynne Featherstone: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much H5N1 vaccine is to be stockpiled in London; and if she will make a statement. [60559]

Jane Kennedy: The Department has awarded contracts to Baxter and Chiron to manufacture a total of 3.7 million doses of H5N1 vaccine and expects to receive stocks by October 2006. The H5N1 supplies will be used to conduct further research and could be used to vaccinate frontline health care workers before a specific pandemic vaccine can be developed. Storage arrangements for the stockpile are yet to be determined.

Bowel Cancer

Mr. Baron: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what funding has been provided by each strategic health authority for the creation of local screening centres in advance of the implementation of the National Bowel Cancer Screening Programme; [61047]

(2) how many testing kits the Department plans to distribute in April 2006 as part of the rollout of the National Bowel Cancer Screening Programme; [61110]

(3) how many people the Department estimates will be tested for bowel cancer in each month to March 2007 following the implementation of the National Bowel Cancer Screening Programme. [61111]

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Ms Rosie Winterton: The Government have stated their commitment to a national bowel cancer screening programme, for which funding has been agreed. On 30 January 2006, the new Health White Paper, Our health, our care, our say: a new direction for community services reaffirmed that the new programme will be rolled out from April 2006.

Five programme hubs across England will invite men and women to participate in the screening programme, send out the faecal occult blood (FOB) testing kits, interpret kits and send results out. 90 to 100 local screening centres will provide endoscopy services for the two per cent. of men and women who have a positive FOB test result.

NHS Cancer Screening Programmes are currently assessing where the five programme hubs will be located. The English bowel cancer screening pilot site at the Hospital of St. Cross, Rugby, Warwickshire, is expected to become the first programme hub when national roll-out begins. It is hoped to establish the other four programme hubs by March 2007, with announcements to be made in due course.

NHS Cancer Screening Programmes are taking all the necessary action to ensure that successful roll-out of the programme, including the procurement of testing kits. Following a formal tendering exercise, a preferred provider of the testing kits has been selected. An order will be placed for the delivery of the kits for the commencement of the programme.

Car Park Charges

Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what discretion she allows NHS trusts in levying car park charges; [58469]

(2) what guidance she has given to NHS trusts on car park charge exemptions. [58470]

Mr. Byrne [holding answer 16 March 2006]: Guidance on implementing car parking charges was last issued to the national health service in 1996 but remains extant. It is a matter for individual NHS trusts to decide whether or not to charge for car parking, and to determine the level of charges in the light of local circumstances.


Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much has been spent centrally on (a) dietary advice and (b) drug treatment for those who are at risk of raised cholesterol in the last period for which figures are available. [36616]

Caroline Flint: To date, the Department has spent approximately £6.9 million on promoting positive benefits of a healthy diet and approximately £2.82 billion on lipid-regulating drugs, used to treat those at risk of raised cholesterol. The Department has not separately estimated the cost of dietary advice for those at risk of raised cholesterol.

Christmas Cards

Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the total cost to her Department was of sending Christmas cards in 2005. [46405]

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Mr. Byrne: All expenditure incurred in the purchase and postage of official Christmas cards is made in accordance with the Department's guidance on financial procedures and propriety, based on principles set out in Government Accounting. Recipient lists are co-ordinated to avoid duplication.

Separate figures for postage costs are not available, as some cards will have been included with other correspondence. The vast majority of those that were not so included were sent using second class post.

Staff numbers, and their time, spent on separate tasks are not recorded, but the amount in each case would have been minimal.

The available information is shown in the table.
Number of
official cards posted

Cost £

The cost of each card purchased in 2005 (apart from200 obtained through a separate order) included a donation of 10 pence to the charities listed.

27 Mar 2006 : Column 782W

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