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18 Apr 2006 : Column 254W—continued

Primary Care Trusts

Mr. Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will list the respondents to the public consultation on the reconfiguration of primary care trusts in Cambridgeshire to date; and if she will make a statement. [60869]

Ms Rosie Winterton: This information is not held centrally.

The local consultation on primary care trust reconfiguration in Cambridgeshire is the responsibility of Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire strategic health authority (SHA). It is for the SHA to provide information about respondents to the local consultation.

Mr. Whittingdale: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what (a) the target level of funding and (b) the proposed accrual level of funding for each primary care trust in Essex is for (i) 2006–07 and (ii) 2007–08. [62817]

Ms Rosie Winterton: Revenue allocations are made to primary care trusts (PCTs) on the basis of the relative needs of their populations. A weighted capitation formula is used to set targets, which then inform allocations. The formula does not determine allocations. Actual allocations reflect decisions on the speed at which PCTs are brought nearer to target through the distribution of extra funds (pace of change policy).

The following tables show the target and actual levels of funding, the percentage increases and closing distances from target for the years 2006–07 and 2007–08 for PCTs in Essex.
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PCTTarget allocation (£000)Recurrent allocation (£000)Closing DFT (percentage)Closing DFT
Billericay, Brentwood and Wickford153,606154,0360.3430
Castle Point and Rochford195,347187,964-3.8-7,383
Epping Forest128,279131,8772.83,598
Maldon and South Chelmsford88,87984,733-4.7-4,146
Southend on Sea211,308217,0562.75,748
Witham, Braintree and Halstead158,144150,157-5.1-7,987


PCTTarget allocation (£000)Recurrent allocation (£000)Closing DFT (percentage)Closing DFT
Billericay, Brentwood and Wickford167,876168,2120.2336
Castle Point and Rochford214,512207,004-3.5-7,508
Epping Forest140,981142,6421.21,661
Maldon and South Chelmsford97,79294,369-3.5-3,423
Southend on Sea231,041234,7711.63,730
Witham, Braintree and Halstead174,426168,321-3.5-6,105

Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the answer of 10 March 2006, Official Report, column 1828W, on primary care trusts (expenditure), if she will provide details of the allocations per (a) weighted and (b) unweighted head for each primary care trust in (i) 2005–06, (ii) 2006–07 and (iii) 2007–08 in the same format as that provided in the answer to the hon. Member for East Worthing and Shoreham (Tim Loughton) on 30 June 2005, Official Report, column 1766W, on primary care trusts. [60405]

Mr. Byrne: Information on the allocations per weighted and unweighted head for each primary care trust in 2005–06, 2006–07 and 2007–08 has been placed in the Library.

Mr. Godsiff: To ask the Secretary of State for Health which of the primary care trusts in the West Midlands have informed her of plans to make redundancies; and (a) how many and (b) in what locations redundancies have been proposed. [62650]

Ms Rosie Winterton: Local consultation on boundary changes to strategic health authorities and primary care trusts concluded on 22 March. No decisions on boundary changes will be taken until the outcomes of local consultation have been fully considered. Until any boundary changes are agreed, it is not possible to calculate the number of job losses in any particular area.
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Primary Healthcare (Brentford and Isleworth)

Ann Keen: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what action her Department has taken to improve primary healthcare services in Brentford and Isleworth constituency since 1997. [62119]

Jane Kennedy: The Government have put in place a programme of national health service investment and reform since 1997 to improve service delivery in England. There is significant evidence that these policies have yielded considerable benefits for the Brentford and Isleworth constituency. For example:

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Mr. Bellingham: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment she has made of the impact of (a) overcrowding and (b) inter-prison transfers of inmates on the delivery of prison health care; and if she will make a statement. [58238]

Ms Rosie Winterton: No such assessment has been made. We accept that overcrowding and the consequent need to move prisoners around has its effects on prisoners' health and well being. However, we are in the process of reforming prison healthcare services. We have increased investment in healthcare in the public prisons by £40 million a year, a rise of over one third since 2002–03, and have transferred the responsibility for commissioning services from the Prison Service to national health service primary care trusts. In addition to this, NHS investment in mental health services for prisoners totalled just under £20 million in 2005–06.

Mr. Bellingham: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what assessment she has made of the quality of healthcare provision in prisons; [60702]

(2) what steps she is taking to ensure that (a) the quality of healthcare provision in prisons is improved and (b) access to treatment in prisons is widened. [60713]

Ms Rosie Winterton: From April 2006, all national health service primary care trusts have been responsible for commissioning primary healthcare for the public prisons in their areas. This milestone completes the transfer of prison healthcare from the Prison Service to the NHS in order to improve prison healthcare so that that all prisoners have access to health services that are broadly equivalent in range and quality to those available to the general public.

We are supporting these improvements with extra revenue; in 2002–03, some £118 million was available, in 2005–06 this rose to nearly £176 million.

The Department is working with the Home Office to improve further health and social care for prisoners through a shared programme that includes extending access to NHS-funded mental health in-reach teams to all prisons, further improving in primary care services, developing the prison health workforce and improving the prison health estate.

Mr. Bellingham: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment she has made of the impact on the (a) provision and (b) accessibility of dental services in prisons of the new contractual arrangements for dentists. [60714]

Ms Rosie Winterton: In April 2003, the Department and HM Prison Service produced a strategy for modernising national health service prison health services. All prisons in England have produced action plans outlining how they will meet the requirements of the strategy including improving access to dental care. In April 2005, primary care trusts (PCTs) which host prisons became responsible for commissioning services to meet the health care needs of prisoners including
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dental services. As such, PCTs have the responsibility for providing the services required to meet the oral health needs of prisoners.

General dental practitioners providing dental services for prisoners will now be doing so under the new NHS contractual arrangements.

Mr. Bellingham: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps she is taking to improve the accuracy of healthcare records of inmates in prison; and if she will make a statement. [57757]

Ms Rosie Winterton: Since 2005, most national health service primary care trusts (PCTs) have been responsible for commissioning healthcare services in the publicly run prisons in England and Wales. From April 2006, all PCTs have had this responsibility. NHS standards, as overseen by NHS professional bodies, now apply to the accuracy and quality of healthcare records of inmates in prisons. Local improvements and developments in respect of accuracy or quality will be taken forward by PCTs.

The National Programme for Information Technology will include prison healthcare centres. This will ensure that prisoners' clinical records adhere to NHS standards of quality and accuracy for electronic records. These records will be electronically transferable not only between prisons, but also to and from the wider NHS, which will help ensure accuracy and continuity of healthcare.

Mr. Bellingham: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what discussions she has had with the Prison Service about the treatment of inmates with long-term mental health problems; [62773]

(2) what steps she is taking to increase mental health provision for those detained in prison with severe mental health problems. [62776]

Ms Rosie Winterton: The Department and the Prison Service are working in partnership to improve the health services available to prisoners. Discussions are ongoing and take place at ministerial and Prison Service management board level, with the coordination of a joint Department of Health and Home Office Directorate.

Under the national partnership agreement on the transfer of responsibility for prison health from the Home Office to the Department, prison health services, including mental health services, have moved from the Prison Service and are now part of the mainstream national health service, with primary care trusts becoming responsible for commissioning these services for the public prisons from April 2006.

The Department is investing nearly £20 million a year in NHS mental health in-reach services for prisoners with severe and enduring mental health problems. These in-reach teams are based on community mental health team models working within prisons and therefore help to provide continuing care as prisoners move between prison and the community. Mental health services are based on the mental health national service framework standards and incorporate use of the care programme approach to ensure assessment, treatment planning and review of individuals' needs. By the spring, every prison in England and Wales will have access to these services.
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It is our policy that prisoners with severe mental health problems should be transferred and treated in hospital whenever possible. To help facilitate quicker transfers to hospital, the Department and the Home Office produced joint guidance in November 2005, to help staff delivering mental health services in prisons work more effectively with community health services. This guidance, The transfer of prisoners to and fromhospital under sections 47 and 48 of the Mental Health Act (1983), Prison Service Instruction 03/2006" is available on the Department's website at:

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