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(2) what recent guidance she has issued to general practitioners on the treatment of Alzheimers disease in its (a) early, (b) moderate and (c) severe stages; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: The Department has not issued any recent guidance to general practitioners on the treatment of Alzheimers disease in its early, moderate and severe stages and, there are no plans for the Department to issue guidance to general practitioners on prescribing Ebixa on the national health service. Until the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence issues revised guidance to the NHS, its original guidance issued in 2001 continues to apply.
Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent research she has (a) commissioned and (b) evaluated on the possible impact of prohibiting Ebixa on the treatment of people in the later stages of Alzheimers disease who have behavioural problems; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: The Department has not commissioned and evaluated any recent research on the possible impact of prohibiting Ebixa for treatment of people in the later stages of Alzheimers disease who have behavioural problems. Until the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence issues revised guidance to the national health service, its original guidance issued in 2001 continues to apply.
Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent research she has (a) commissioned and (b) evaluated on the possible impact on carers of withdrawing Alzheimers drug treatments; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: The Department has not commissioned and evaluated any recent research on the possible impact on carers of withdrawing Alzheimers drug treatments. Until the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence issues revised guidance to the national health service, its original guidance issued in 2001 continues to apply.
Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will review the decision of the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence to withdraw access to anticholinesterase drugs from patients at the early stages of Alzheimers disease; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) appraisal of these drugs has not yet concluded. Until NICE issues revised guidance to the national health service, its original guidance issued in 2001 continues to apply.
Mr. Ivan Lewis [holding answer 22 June 2006]: Meeting the care needs of people with long-term conditions, including better access to care plans, is a key theme of the White Paper, Our Health, Our Care, Our Say.
Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether the assessment, fitting and follow-up of digital hearing aids is included in (a) payment-by-results and (b) practice based commissioning; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: The provision of digital hearing aids is not included in payment by results because the entire digital hearing aids service is not part of the reference costs which underpin the tariff. This is due to their treatment as capitalised grouped assets.
As long as the purchase of digital hearing aids in bulk by national health service bodies is deemed to be a capital transaction, they will remain outside the reference costs collections and therefore payment by results.
Practice based commissioning gives practices greater freedom to commission services for their patients. Only core general medical services/personal medical services specialised services, services commissioned regionally and nationally, and national screening programmes are excluded from the potential scope of a practices indicative budget.
Mr. Ivan Lewis: The autism research co-ordination group brings together Government officials, professional bodies and voluntary sector organisations to identify gaps in research, including research on diagnosis, and advises policy makers.
The autism spectrum disorders exemplar follows a patient journey from diagnosis to transition into adult services at age 16. This exemplar illustrates some of the key themes of the children, young people and maternity services national service framework. The exemplar is intended to be useful in a number of ways, providing a multi-disciplinary training tool for staff working with children and young people to raise awareness of specific issues, including early identification, diagnosis and intervention.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what meetings have taken place between the Avon, Gloucestershire and Wiltshire Strategic Health Authority (SHA) and its constituent primary health care trusts to discuss its operating framework; and when the planned savings required of each organisation within the SHA were agreed. 
Caroline Flint: The Department does not collect details of meetings between strategic health authorities (SHAs) and primary care trusts (PCTs). This is a local matter for Avon, Gloucestershire and Wiltshire SHA and its PCTs.
Mr. Ivan Lewis: Improving child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS) is one of the priorities for this Government, as emphasised by the public service agreement standard of a comprehensive CAMHS to be in place by December 2006. This commitment to improve CAMHS has been backed by significant additional funding, over £300 million in the last three years.
The CAMHS module of the childrens national service framework for England (September 2004) sets the framework for CAMHS for the next 10 years. It sets the standard that all children and young people, from birth to their 18th birthday, who have mental health problems and disorders, will have access to timely, integrated, high quality multidisciplinary mental health services to ensure effective assessment, treatment and support, for them, their parents or carers, and other family members.
Mr. Graham Stuart: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate she has made of the number of patients who have been referred to an inappropriate doctor in secondary care under the choose and book system; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: National data on the number of rejected referrals and the reasons for these such as inappropriate referral are not centrally collected. However, these data are available at an organisational level, for example within general practitioner practices and acute trusts. In future, it is intended that national level data will be collected through the secondary uses service and plans are currently being developed.
Some choose and book referrals, in addition to some non-choose and book referrals, are rejected. Referrals are usually rejected either when referrers have selected inappropriate services or when providers have not given sufficient detail about the services they offer. These rejections are not linked to the information technology system, as choose and book enables providers to describe their services in sufficient detail to allow referrers to identify the appropriate service, and to regularly review and update their descriptions based on feedback.
Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many appointments on the choose and book system (a) require the use of the telephone and (b) have the option of using the telephone to book the appointment. 
Where service providers have a patient administration system which is compliant with the choose and book application, services are directly bookable and appointment slots may be booked electronically without requiring the use of the telephone.
Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) whether the latest figures for the use of the choose and book system are derived (a) from the system's generation of a unique booking reference number and (b) from the booking of an appointment; and if she will make a statement; 
(2) whether the latest figures for the use of the choose and book system are for those appointments which are made entirely electronically and have not involved the patient or general practitioner in using the telephone; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: In May 2006, about 116,000 referrals were made through the choose and book service, which was an increase of approximately 46,000 on the April 2006 figure. These include referrals to outpatient services and clinical assessment services where bookings were made, but excludes re-bookings.
Entirely electronic bookings may be made in the general practitioner's (GP) surgery or via the Internet, where services are directly bookable. No information is collected on how many bookings to directly bookable services were made by telephone, either from within the GP surgery or later by the patient.
Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the answer of 8 May 2006, Official Report, columns 634W on the choose and book system, what budget had been set for the (a) choice and (b) choose and book anticipated costs (i) for administrative and other staff, (ii) incurred by consultants and acute trusts, (iii) for other computer software and hardware not directly associated with the NHS Connecting for Health Agency and (iv) for other administration infrastructure for each year the programme was budgeted to operate. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: The consultation on an improved national framework for continuing care was launched on 19 June 2006. We cannot anticipate what the new framework will be until the consultation is completed and we have considered all responses.
Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many people met the eligibility criteria for continuing NHS health care in each of the last six years; and how many met the criteria at the latest date for which figures are available; 
(4) how many people have been granted recompense for being wrongly denied fully-funded national health service continuing care in each of the last 10 years; and what the aggregate cost of that recompense was; 
|Table 1: People newly meeting eligibility criteria for continuing care|
LDPR line 8229
NHS continuing care can be provided in any setting, including a care home or an individuals own home. The Department does not collect information on the settings in which NHS continuing care is received. Information on the total number of people receiving NHS continuing care is shown in table 2.
|Table 2: People receiving continuing care|
LDPR line 8228
Of the 11,655 requests for investigations received by 31 March 2004, 86.1 per cent. had been investigated, with 1,796 being found eligible for restitution. No later data is available. We expect that the NHS will pay around £180 million in restitution. The Department does not collect data about the number of people who subsequently took cases to the Health Ombudsman. The Health Ombudsman is entirely independent of the Department and questions should be addressed directly to Ann Abraham.
Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many local authorities have undergone an independent cost of care analysis on which to base local fee negotiations with independent and third sector care providers. 
The principles for contracting for care services set out in building capacity and partnerships in care (BCPC)
are: fairness to service-users, to taxpayers and service providers; and the encouragement of fair competition. The BCPC is available on the Departments website at: www.doh.gov.uk/assetRoot/04/05/36/33/04053633.pdf
Mr. Ivan Lewis: I understand from the chair of the Commission for Social Care Inspection, which registers, inspects and regulates care homes, that the information is not collected in the format requested. At 31 March 2006, there were 5,162 care homes registered under the categories of dementia or dementia (elderly), with 192,833 care places.
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