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Mr. Anthony Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what meetings officials in her Department have had with representatives of the public relations company Portland PR; what contracts Portland PR has with her Department and agencies for which she has responsibility; and what the nature of the contract is in each case. 
Mr. Hoon: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) does not maintain a central list of such meetings. Civil servants meet many people as part of the process of policy development and business delivery. All such meetings are conducted in accordance with the requirements of the Civil Service Code and Guidance for Civil Servants on contacts with lobbyists and people outside Government.
Mr. Philip Hammond: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what his Department's employer contribution rates to the principal civil service pension scheme are; what assumed rate of return underlies those contribution rates; and what the contribution rate would be if the assumed rate of return was in line with current redemption yield on index-linked gilts. 
Mr. Keith Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions she has had with her US counterpart regarding the US proposal to freeze the assets of those involved in the 2005 assassination of the former Lebanese Prime Minister, Rafiq Hariri; and if she will make a statement. 
Dr. Howells: My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary expects to continue the close co-ordination with the US on all aspects of our Lebanon policy. This includes continued discussions, at ministerial and official level on this issue.
UN Security Council resolution 1636 of October 2005 requires that all States shall freeze all funds, financial assets and economic resources owned or controlled, directly or indirectly, by individuals designated by the UN International Independent Investigation Commission (UNIIIC) or by the Government of Lebanon as suspected of involvement in the assassination of Mr. Hariri. Neither UNIIIC nor the Government of Lebanon has yet requested such action.
Mr. Nicholas Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment she has made of the cost of visas and work permits for visiting orchestras from Russia; and if she will make a statement. 
Dr. Howells: Visiting orchestras, from Russia, or from elsewhere, may qualify for group multiple entry work permits. Such permits, issued by Work Permits UK, cost £153 per group application and can be issued for a minimum of six months and a maximum of one year. If such a work permit were obtained, each individual would have to apply for entry clearance as a work permit holder. Visas would be issued in line with the validity of the work permit and would therefore cover multiple trips to the UK. The current fee for such a visa is £85.
UKvisas and Work Permits UK are mandated by HM Treasury guidelines to recover their costs without burdening the UK taxpayer. The visa application fee
for each category of entry clearance, set in Sterling and usually payable in local currency, is the same, wherever in the world an individual applies.
David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many staff in her Department have had (a) five or more, (b) four, (c) three and (d) two periods of sick leave of less than five days in each of the last three years. 
Mr. Hoon: In February 2005 the Foreign and Commonwealth Office implemented new arrangements for recording sickness absence. Staff, both in the UK and overseas, now record sick leave absences electronically. While the electronic system was being rolled out during financial year (FY) 2005-06, there may have an element of under reporting. This may account for the significant differences between sickness absences in FYs 2003-04, 2004-05 and those in FY 2005-06. We strongly encourage staff to use the new system and are working on measures to improve the accuracy of the existing data.
Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how much has been paid to the Government by the United Nations Compensation Committee for distribution to claimants; how much more is expected to be paid to the Government for disbursement to claimants; how many UK claimants (a) have and (b) after including subsequent payments which are due will have received disbursements from the UK Government in excess of
(i) £500,000, (ii) £1 million, (iii) £2 million,(iv) £5 million, (v) £10 million, (vi) £20 million and (vii) £50 million; whether any of the money has been disbursed to (A) the Government itself and (B) agencies of the Government; and if she will make a statement. 
Nearly 5,000 UK claimants have so far received disbursements of varying amounts from the Government. A breakdown of these figures is not held centrally, and the figures could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.
Mr. Hoon: At present the Foreign and Commonwealth Office does not offer any direct incentives to staff to encourage them to share vehicles. However, we do apply policies which contribute to staff using more sustainable methods of transport:
we limit staff parking in the Main Building in London to those who work unsocial hours and those with a disability. The majority of our staff in London use public transport;
we provide cycle racks and changing facilities, with about 220 staff in the UK currently cycling to work;
we currently offer staff an advance of salary to purchase a bicycle for home to office journeys and are looking into upgrading this to a salary sacrifice scheme, enabling staff to obtain cycles at a reduced cost;
with the support of the Civil Service Travel Group, we are launching a campaign on 5 June, World Environment Day, which among other things will highlight to staff the environmental impact of their travel choices;
we provide a minibus service for junior members of staff living in Milton Keynes and Northampton to our rural site in Hanslope Park in Buckinghamshire as only a very limited public transport service is available to the site;
all taxi journeys out of the Hanslope Park site are shared, where it is operationally possible to do so;
we are developing a Travel Plan which will be aimed at promoting sustainable modes of travel among our staff with a particular focus on car sharing;
within our flexible working policy we encourage staff to work from home thereby reducing the number of journeys;
we encourage the use of video conferencing facilities to limit non-essential travel.
Overseas, travel policy is devolved to posts. Examples of good practice are the enhancement of
bicycle travel allowance to encourage people to use bicycles rather than cars, and encourage staff to walk to meetings and to share taxis where possible.
Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what estimate she has made of how many people have Alzheimers disease, broken down by (a) strategic health authority and (b) primary care trust; what forecast she has made of the number of new cases each year and incidence over the next (i) 20 and (ii) 30 years; and what estimate she has made of the incidence in other EU countries; 
Dementia currently affects over 750,000 people in the United Kingdom (UK). It is estimated that by 2026 there will be 840,000 people with dementia in the UK, rising to 1.2 million by 2050. The Department has not made such an estimate of incidence of Alzheimers disease in other European Union countries
Information on the number of people with Alzheimers disease, broken down by strategic health authority (SHA) and primary care trust (PCT) is not available but information on the number of people in England admitted to hospital where Alzheimers disease was a diagnosis in SHA and PCTs is shown in the table.
|Count of patients admitted to hospital with Alzheimers disease as a diagnosis by SHA and PCTData for all national health service hospitals in England, data years 2002-03, 2003-04, 2004-05|
ICD10 codes used: G30 Alzheimers disease (as provided by Data Standards, Connecting for Health)
FCEsfinished consultant episodes
All diagnoses count of episodes:
These figures represent a count of all FCEs where the diagnosis was mentioned in any of the 14 (seven prior to 2002-03) diagnosis fields in a HES record.
Hospital Episode Statistics (HES), The Information Centre for health and social care
Mr. Ivan Lewis: The number of finished consultant episodes(1 )involving a diagnosis of autistic spectrum disorders, for children aged up to 15 in 2004-05, in Torbay primary care trust (PCT) was 83, and in England was 5,888.
Data for England is for all national health service hospitals. Data for Torbay shows figures for children treated by Torbay PCT. The figures do not represent the number of patients, as a person may have more than one episode of care within the year.
(1) A finished consultant episode is defined as a period of admitted patient care under one consultant within one healthcare provider.
Mr. Baron: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment she has made of the merits of raising the upper age limit for bone marrow donation; and what plans she has to encourage UK registries to reach a consensus on this matter. 
The NHSBT is looking into developing a school pack for 16 to 18-year-olds. The pack would be designed to promote all donation opportunities within NHSBT, for example blood, bone marrow, organs, tissues and cord blood. NHSBTs strategy over the coming year is to maintain the BBMR at its current size and focus their recruitment activity towards under represented ethnic groups.
As National Statistician, I have been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question asking how many people were diagnosed with breast cancer in Shrewsbury and Atcham in 2005.(72521)
The most recent available figures for newly diagnosed cases of cancer registered in England are the year 2003. There were 67 cases of breast cancer diagnosed in Shrewsbury and Atcham county district in 2003.
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