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13 Jun 2006 : Column 1186Wcontinued
Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what steps her Department is taking to speed up the fast track referral pathways for photodynamic therapy patients (a) in the Richmond and Twickenham primary care trust and (b) in England; 
(2) how many patients have been referred for photodynamic therapy treatment (a) in England and (b) in the Richmond and Twickenham primary care trust area in each of the last five years for which records are available; 
(3) what percentage of the available capacity at the Kingston photodynamic therapy treatment centre has been used in each month since November 2005. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: NHS Specialised Services Commissioners are responsible for commissioning photodynamic therapy. Guidance to commissioners has stressed the importance of ensuring the development of fast track systems to ensure that the time between the initial referral and the treatment is as short as possible. Locally, commissioners and clinicians have worked to raise awareness and speed the patient's passage from first contact with a health care professional to treatment. Where there is a need we look to Commissioners to continue to work for improvements.
Data for the available capacity at the Kingston photodynamic therapy (PDT) treatment centre are not collected centrally nor are figures for the number of patients referred for PDT locally or nationally. However, the table shows the count of finished consultant episodes and patients for selected diagnosis and operations where the primary diagnosis was degeneration of macula and posterior pole and the main operation was an eye operation for Richmond and Twickenham Primary Care Trust and England.
|Count of Finished Consultant Episodes and Patients for Selected Diagnosis and Operations, Primary diagnosis: Degeneration of Macula and Posterior Pole (ICD-10 Code H35.3), Main Operation: Eye Operations (OPCS-4 between C01-C86), NHS Hospitals in England 2000-01 to 2004-05|
|Richmond and Twickenham PCT||England|
|Finished Consultant Episodes||Patients||Finished Consultant Episodes||Patients|
| Finished Consultant Episode (FCE)|
An FCE is defined as a period of admitted patient care under one consultant within one health care provider. Please note that the figures do not represent the number of patients, as a person may have more than one episode of care within the year.
Patient counts are based on the unique patient identifier HESID. This identifier is derived based on patient's date of birth, postcode, sex, local patient identifier and NHS number, using an agreed algorithm. Where data are incomplete, HESID might erroneously link episodes or fail to recognise episodes for the same patient. Care is therefore needed, especially where duplicate records persist in the data. The patient count cannot be summed across a table where patients may have episodes in more than one cell.
Diagnosis (Primary Diagnosis)
The primary diagnosis is the first of up to 14 (7 prior to 2002-03) diagnosis fields in the Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) data set and provides the main reason why the patient was in hospital.
The main operation is the first recorded operation in the HES data set and is usually the most resource intensive procedure performed during the episode. It is appropriate to use main operation when looking at admission details, e.g. time waited, but the figures for "all operations count of episodes" give a more complete count of episodes with an operation.
Primary Care Trust (PCT) and Strategic Health Authority (SHA) Data Quality
PCT and SHA data were added to historic data years in the HES database using 2002-03 boundaries, as a one-off exercise in 2004. The quality of the data on PCT of Treatment and SHA of Treatment are poor in 1996-97, 1997-98 and 1998-99, with over a third of all finished episodes having missing values in these years. Data quality of PCT of GP practice and SHA of GP practice in 1997-98 and 1998-99 are also poor, with a high proportion missing values where practices changed or ceased to exist. There is less change in completeness of the residence-based fields over time, where the majority of unknown values are due to missing postcodes on birth episodes. Users of time series analysis including these years need to be aware of these issues in their interpretation of the data.
Due to reasons of confidentiality, figures between 1 and 5 have been suppressed and replaced with "*" (an asterisk).
Figures have not been adjusted for shortfalls in data (i.e. the data are ungrossed).
Hospital Episode Statistics (HES), Health and Social Care Information Centre.
Mrs. Iris Robinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will estimate how many people suffer from each of the forms of porphyria. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: We have made no estimates for the number of people living with the seven different forms of porphyria.
Mr. Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many representations she had received on the reconfiguration of primary care trusts in Cambridgeshire, up to 22 March 2006; how many of these were supportive of the proposals outlined by the Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire strategic health authority; and if she will make a statement. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridge primary care trust (PCT) consulted on having three PCTs (Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire) or five PCTs (Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Peterborough, Great Yarmouth and Waveney).
Secretary of State and other Health Ministers received 18 representations on the reconfiguration of PCTs in Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire up to 22 March 2006.
The 18 representations were made against the strategic health authorities and were broken down as follows:
two lobbied for single PCT for Great Yarmouth and Waveney PCT;
11 lobbied for a single PCT for Huntingdon;
three lobbied for a single PCT for Peterborough;
two suggested alternatives to the options that were being consulted on.
An announcement on PCT reconfiguration was made on 16 May. The new configuration of PCTs in Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridge will be five PCTs. The new PCTs are expected to come into force in October.
Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will list the private Members' Bills in respect of which her Department adopted a policy of neutrality in each session since 2001-02; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: This information could be provided only at disproportionate cost. Where private Members' Bills receive a second reading Ministers indicate the Government's position at that point.
David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many complaints of racial abuse in her Department have been (a) investigated and (b) upheld in each of the last five years. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: There have been no complaints of racial abuse in the last five years.
Mr. Jenkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much (a) her Department and (b) its agencies spent on recruitment, search and selection agencies in each of the last five years. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: This information is not held centrally. Obtaining the data would incur disproportionate costs.
Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the final financial position of the Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust will be for financial year 2005-06; and what assessment she has made of the implications of this for the (a) patient services and (b) health economy in Cornwall. 
Caroline Flint: I am advised that South West Peninsula Strategic Health Authority has commissioned an independent review to work with the trust to understand the size and causes of the deficit. This work is due to be concluded in early June and the report being presented to the public trust board meeting on 13 June.
The trust is part of the national National Health Service turnaround programme for organisations experiencing financial difficulty. The results of the
independent review will be incorporated into a turnaround plan. This plan will also make clear what the implications of turnaround will be on local services and the health economy in Cornwall.
Mr. Vara: To ask the Secretary of State for Health which organisations were (a) successful and (b) unsuccessful in their bids through the section 64 Scheme of Grants for 2006-07. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis [holding answer 23 May 2006]: A list of those organisations who were successful in their application for a Section 64 General Scheme of Grants in the 2006-07 application round is available on the Department's website at: www.dh.gov.uk/section64.
A copy of the list of those organisations that were unsuccessful has been placed in the Library.
Lynne Featherstone: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many cases of tuberculosis there have been in each London borough in each of the last five years. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: The information requested is shown in the table.
|Cases of tuberculosis in each London borough, 2000-04|
Data as at 6 June 2006.
Data on 2005 cases are not yet available.
Health Protection Agency enhanced tuberculosis surveillance scheme.
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