|Wave 1 ISTC schemes
|Diagnostic tests( 1)
|(1) Current expected total volume over the contract period.
Dr. Murrison: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether the National Service Framework for Older People Standard Three on Intermediate Care has been met in respect of intermediate care beds and supported intermediate care places. 
Andy Burnham: Information is collected centrally on hospital trusts that have outsourced all or part of their provision of laundry services and where figures have been reported, these have been placed in the Library. The information represents the position as reported at 31 March 2005, which is the latest available.
The data were provided by national health service organisations on a voluntary basis and they are incomplete. It is for local trusts to determine the extent to which and service should be contracted out.
Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what guidance she issues to Ministers in her Department from (a) this House and (b) the House of Lords on responding to requests from hon. Members for meetings; and if she will take steps to increase the accountability of Ministers to hon. Members. 
Ms Hewitt [holding answer 26 June 2006]: The Secretary of State for Health makes time available to meet hon. Members of all parties, as does her ministerial team from both the House and the House of Lords. She encourages hon. Members to approach parliamentary private secretaries who will facilitate and organise such meetings as required.
The Secretary of State for Health is pleased to learn that the hon. Member met the Minister of State for Health (Reform) on 26 June, following the postponement of two previous meetings due to diary pressures on both sides.
David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the total cost was of overnight accommodation for (a) civil servants and (b) special advisers in her Department staying overnight in (i) mainland Great Britain, (ii) Northern Ireland, (iii) the Republic of Ireland and (iv) other countries in each of the last three years. 
To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much has been spent on the National Programme for Information Technology, broken down by major
cost area; and what the total expenditure on the programme was originally expected to be. 
|Lifetime contract value (£ million)
|Expenditure to 31 March 2006 (£ million)
Caroline Flint: A target to provide consultants with networked desktop personal computer (PC) access to the NHS net had already been substantially achieved by the end of 2002, before the national programme was established.
Additionally, after the inception of the national programme, during 2003-04, the NHS Purchasing and Supply Agency undertook an electronic reverse auction procurement on behalf of the programme to supply some 60,000 PCs, driving down the cost of providing personal computers to the staff of national health service organisations in both the short and longer term.
Mr. Harper: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the oral answer of 24 May 2006, Official Report, column 1477, what new NHS facilities were included in the cost of £32 million quoted by the Prime Minister. 
Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what funding her Department provides to health trusts to spend on IT; and whether the funding is drawn from the same allocation as frontline patient services. 
Caroline Flint: National health service trusts are paid for the provision of care services commissioned from them by primary care trusts (PCTs). The great majority of funding allocated to PCTs is not hypothecated for specific purposes. Exceptionally, £84 million was allocated for local implementation of the national programme for information technology (IT) in 2004-05, and a further £84 million in 2005-06.
Each NHS organisation is expected to use its resources in a way that delivers the best possible care for patients and value for money. Spending on modern information technology is vital to getting the best out of NHS staff and equipment, and makes them more effective quicker than any other investment. The NHS already spends about £1.2 billion each year on IT, and the Department has have always made it clear that it expects NHS trusts to follow the recommendations in the 2002 Wanless report to increase this over time. Monitoring progress towards achieving this is part of the Department's regular performance management arrangements for the NHS. It has therefore always been recognised that some national programme implementation costs, for example, on training and local hardware upgrades, will be borne locally over the programme's 10-year life.