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Ms Rosie Winterton: There are no plans to change the statutory powers of overview and scrutiny committees. A stronger local voice sets out Governments plans for the future of patient and public involvement, which includes encouraging overview and scrutiny committees to focus on how health and social services are commissioned.
Mr. Frank Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when the allocation of £12 million for 2006-07 will be released for the NHS end of life care programme and the gold standards framework in community palliative care. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: The Government have provided £12 million of funding for the end of life care programme, to be spread out over the three years from 2004 to 2007. In 2006-07, the funding will be included as part of a block sum for strategic health authorities to manage. To ensure the desired outcomes are achieved, this will be accompanied by a service level agreement.
Tim Farron: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when she will answer parliamentary written questions (a) 82270, (b) 82271, (c) 82272 and (d) 82273, on telephones in hospitals, tabled by the hon. Member for Westmorland and Lonsdale for answer on 3 July. 
Anne Main: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether the London strategic health authorities have been requested to produce an action plan to ensure an increased level of patient satisfaction with their perception of levels of care. 
Andy Burnham: The London strategic health authority (SHA) has commissioned a study to establish the public perception of the national health service in London and intends to use the results to target areas for improved performance.
Mr. Walker: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether she has reviewed the findings of the survey undertaken by Patient and Public Involvement Forums into the costs associated with personal bedside telephone services in NHS hospitals; and if she will make a statement. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: The Department has set up a review group to explore the issue of costs to users of the bedside television and telephone systems in national health service hospitals. The patient and public involvement forums findings will form part of the review groups work.
Anne Main: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what measures her Department has put in place to improve the delivery of information to prostate cancer sufferers about relevant cancer support. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: The Department is clear about the need for all cancer patients to be able to access up-to-date and accessible information about their condition and that is why we are working closely with cancer charities to improve services. This is being facilitated by the coalition for cancer information, set up by the Department in 2002 bringing together key organisations to develop a coordinated approach to provision and dissemination of information.
In March 2004, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) published guidance on supportive and palliative care. One of its recommendations included the provision of high quality information to patients. The cancer services collaborative Improvement Partnership national patient information programme is supporting cancer networks to implement this guidance. This work will ensure that as part of their on-going cancer care, cancer patients and their carers will be offered high-quality information materials, tailored to their individual needs, at appropriate stages in their care pathways. The recent White Paper, Our health, our care, our say, stated that by 2008. everyone with a long term condition (and their carers) will receive an information prescription to signpost them to sources of information, support and advice.
Decisions about treatment for prostate cancer can often be difficult and complicated. The first phase of the action on urology implementation of decision aids for urological cancers pilot programme ended in 2005. The pilot was designed to implement the use of decision aids for men with prostate cancer into routine practice in the national health service. The programme found that patients and professionals found the decision aids helpful in supporting the decision-making process. The second phase of the programme has now begun, aiming to enhance effectiveness before national roll-out take place. Six pilot sites are involved in the second phase.
Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many public appointments are within her patronage; what (a) salary and (b) other emoluments are attached to each; and what the comparable figures were in (i) 1976, (ii) 1986 and (iii) 1996. 
Andy Burnham: Details of the public appointments to public bodies sponsored by the Department can be found in Public Bodies, copies of which are in the Library. Public Bodies has been published annually since 1980 and the most recent edition provides figures for 2005. Each edition of Public Bodies contains details on the number of public appointments and remuneration details for that particular year. Comparable information for 1976 in respect of the Department could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
Mr. Gordon Prentice: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many patient and public involvement forums have objected to proposed re-configurations of hospitals and hospital services in each year since 2003. 
Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to her Department's list of organisations consulted on religious issues affecting matters concerning her Department, what assessment she has made of the extent to which the Network of Buddhist Organisations is representative of that faith's adherents; and if she will make a statement. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: The Department has made no such assessment. The Network of Buddhist Organisations is one of a range of faith organisations that the Department consults with on relevant issues. For example, the Network of Buddhist Organisations is a member of independently formed multi-faith group which the Department maintains close contact with as part of our commitment to a multi-faith approach to NHS Chaplaincy.
Mr. Paice: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what percentage of rural households had access to primary health care facilities within 4 km, not including mobile provision and branch services, in each year since 1997. 
Derek Wyatt: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the answer of 16 June 2006, Official Report, column 1568W, on Sheppey community hospital, if she will clarify when the new x-ray scanner will be installed and operational. 
Caroline Flint: The NHS South East Coast has advised that at a meeting held on 12 July at Sheppey hospital, details for the installation of the new X-ray scanner were finalised. An agreement was reached to dismantle the old equipment during the week commencing 17 July 2006 and it is anticipated that installation of the new machine will start once this has been completed. Installation will take around three weeks from start to finish.
Dr. Desmond Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what percentage of patients with relevant conditions use silver alloy catheters; and what savings have been identified as a result of their use. 
The ultimate decision on which type of catheter is used for patients is a clinical one. Recently updated guidelines(1) commissioned by the Department indicate that further properly conducted trials are required to obtain definitive conclusions on the cost effectiveness of these catheters.
(1 )The epic project. Updating the evidence base for national evidence based guidelines for preventing health care associated infections in NHS hospital in England: a report with recommendations. Pellowe CM, Pratt RJ, Loveday HP, Harper P, Robinson N, Jones SRLJ. Brit J Infect Control 2004; 5: 10-16.
Mr. Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the Answer of the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster to Question 80515, how many days a year were expected from Sir Alistair Graham as a member of the (a) NHS Appointments Commission and (b) West Yorkshire strategic health authority. 
Andy Burnham: Sir Alistair Graham would have been expected to work in the order of 150 days a year for each of the NHS Appointments Commission and the West Yorkshire Strategic Health Authority. These appointments did not run concurrently.
Norman Lamb: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the answer of 20 June 2006, Official Report, column 1816, on the Skipton Fund, whether (a) a panel has been appointed to hear appeals to the Skipton Fund and (b) a timetable has been set for the commencement of appeals to the Skipton Fund; and if she will make a statement. 
Caroline Flint: The NHS Appointments Commission (NHSAC) will be interviewing further candidates for the Skipton Fund appeals panel at the end of this month, as no applications for two of the positions had been received by the original closing date. The recommendations of the interviewing panel will then be forwarded for consideration by the NHSAC board. Once the panel has been appointed, the timetable for hearing appeals will be arranged by the panel chair and the secretariat.
Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what progress has been made since the Department published its policy guidance entitled Keeping the NHS LocalA New Direction of Travel in respect of the protection and enhancement of small acute hospitals located remotely from larger district general hospitals. 
Andy Burnham: Following Keeping the NHS Local the Department has worked to support strategic health authorities (SHAs) in their work with the local national health service in designing new models of service within the policy framework, especially about undertaking effective public engagement and consultation.
More recently the director of programmes and performance at the Department wrote to SHAs on 16 February 2006 reminding them of the policy position set out in the White Paper Our health, our care, our say: a new direction for community services, specifically 6.42 which said that
community facilities should not be lost in response to short-term budgetary pressures that are not related to the viability of the community facility itself.
Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many small acute hospitals have been (a) subject to a withdrawal of emergency facilities, (b) subject to a reduction of acute facilities, (c) closed, (d) proposed for closure, (e) subject to an overall closure in emergency facilities and (f) subject to an overall closure in acute facilities since the publication of the policy guidance Keeping the NHS LocalA New Direction of Travel. 
Derek Conway: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many (a) full-time and (b) part-time stipendiary chaplains are working in the national health service in England; how many are (i) Christian, (ii) Jewish, (iii) Muslim, (iv) Hindu, (v) Sikh, and (vi) of other religions; and what the total cost was to public funds of providing NHS chaplaincy services in the last year for which figures are available. 
Caroline Flint: The Health Protection Agencys (then national radiological protection board) advisory group on non-ionising radiation (AGNIR) produced a report in 2002 on the effects of ultraviolet radiation (UVR) on human health, which included advice on effects on the eye. The main source of UVR for the majority of people is the sun.
There has been no specific action taken and there are no plans to encourage the wearing of sunglasses, as the advice is not straightforward. The executive summary of the AGNIR report includes the following advice.
The eyes can be protected by wearing a hat, eyeshades and using sunglasses that exclude both direct and reflected UVR. It is important that theses sunglasses include wraparound protection. Sunglasses fitted with small lenses offer inadequate protection and may actually increase risk of eye damage as they can cause dilation of the pupils and allow the entry of more UVR into the eye from around the periphery of the sunglasses.
Mike Wood: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what percentage of her Departments expenditure in 2006-07 is expected to be spent on treatments and care provided by the third sector; and what that figure is expected to be by 2009. 
Mike Wood: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what percentage of staff her Department expects to move across to the third sector from their current employment with the NHS by the end of 2010. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: As we noted in Health Reform in England: update and commissioning framework, published on 13 July 2006, many third sector providers are vital partners in delivery of care. Our policy is to support greater participation by third sector organisations where they can help deliver better services with better value for money.
We are taking forward the conclusions and commitments of the Third Sector Commissioning Task Force. However, the Department has no target or proposals for staff to move from the national health service to the third sector.
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