|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the value of the budget is for commissioning specialised services to be transferred from her Department to the national health service in the 2007-08 financial year. 
Andy Burnham: The overall budget for nationally commissioned specialised healthcare services in 2007-08 is £346.4 million, of which £233.4 million will be transferred from the Department to the national health service, with the remainder coming from previously agreed transfers from primary care trust allocations. A further transfer in respect of staff who manage the programme is currently being finalised.
Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what mechanisms are in place to ensure accuracy and probity in the reporting of the performance of NHS organisations against targets; and what sanctions exist to deter abuse of performance measures. 
Andy Burnham: All performance monitoring returns required by the Department are cleared by the review of central returns process. Subsequently, data standards and definitions are developed, with guidance on form completion issued and a central query service provided to the national health service.
Deliberate misreporting of waiting list data is inexcusable and we have made it very clear that serious consequences will follow any individual or trusts that seek to manipulate their performance data.
Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment she has made of the likely financial effect upon the NHS of changes to the distribution of pharmaceutical products by (a) AstraZeneca and (b) Lilly. 
The Department will monitor any new arrangements. If the changes result in shortages, disruptions to supply, any additional costs to the national health service, or has a detrimental affect on funding pharmacy contractors then the Department will seek to ensure the corrective action is taken.
Andy Burnham: Voluntary collection and reporting of referral to treatment (RTT) data has been under way since autumn 2006. Mandatory national RTT waiting time collection for admitted patients begins this month, and for non-admitted patients in April. Publication will begin as soon as the data are of sufficient quality. For the admitted data this is likely to be in the spring; for the non-admitted data in the summer.
The national health service undertook a baseline data research exercise in summer 2006 involving an estimation methodology that looked at hospital attendance and admission records from earlier in the year. The results, which do not have the status of official or national statistics are available on the 18 weeks website (www.18weeks.nhs.uk) and suggest that, nationally, in early 2006, the pathways of 35 per cent. of admitted and 70-80 per cent. of non-admitted patients were completed within 18 weeks.
Mr. Iain Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans she has for the funding of the Young People's Development Programme; if she will take steps to maintain funding for the Programme after March 2007; and if she will make a statement. 
Caroline Flint: The Young People's Development Programme was set up as a three year pilot. The intention has always been to embed the lessons learned into mainstream activity. The National Youth Agency and Department are supporting the 27 projects in making the case for funding in future years from their local authority areas on the basis that the Young People's Development Programme will form part of the new targeted youth support arrangements being taken forward by the Department for Education and Skills.
Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether local authority commissioned adoption agencies run by religious bodies will be subject to the Equality Act Regulations in Northern Ireland. 
Mr. Hanson: Yes. All providers of public services, including religious adoption agencies, where they are under a contract with a public authority, will be subject to the Regulations introduced under the Equality Act 2006.
Mark Durkan: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what progress has been made with the investigation being carried out by the Coroner at the request of Altnagelvin Hospital into the sudden deaths of four babies at the hospital; when the Coroner is expected to report; and if he will make a statement. 
The Coroners Service issued a statement on 15 December concerning this matter. I have arranged for a copy of this to be placed in the Library of the House. It is not possible to give a timescale at this stage, but I have been assured that the experts involved in assisting the Senior Coroners investigation are conscious of the need to deal with the matter as quickly as possible.
Lady Hermon: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether the drug Reminyl is available on the NHS prescribed list of medicines for all patients suffering from Alzheimers disease in Northern Ireland; and how many patients are being treated with the drug in Northern Ireland. 
Paul Goggins: Reminyl is available on health service prescription in Northern Ireland following examination and recommendation by a consultant taking into account evidence based practice and the needs of the patient.
Lady Hermon: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland which ambulance stations in each of the health boards in Northern Ireland provide (a) 24-hour coverage and (b) less than 24-hour coverage. 
Paul Goggins: The Northern Ireland Ambulance Service provides a 24 hour presence in every ambulance station throughout Northern Ireland with the exception of Castlederg Ambulance Station, which operates one Accident and Emergency resource from Monday to Friday 8 am to 5 pm and 11 pm to 8 am. No cover is provided from this station from 5 pm to 11 pm on a daily basis. Also, there is no day crew in operation on Sundays in Castlederg although night-time cover is provided from 11 pm to 8 am. On those occasions when there is no cover provided from Castlederg ambulance cover is provided by the nearest available ambulance.
Dr. Alasdair McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many incidents of arson there were in the (a) Lisburn Road and (b) University and Holyland areas in each of the last five years. 
Paul Goggins: The number of occasions on which the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service has been called upon to deal with incidents of arson in the areas specified is set out in the following table.
|Lisburn road||University and Holyland||Total|
Dr. Alasdair McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many of those who have completed the Diploma in Careers Guidance have since been promoted within the Northern Ireland civil service. 
Maria Eagle: 20 employees of the Department for Employment and Learning completed the Postgraduate Diploma in Careers Guidance (QCG) in the first year of the course (2002-03). Following completion of the course, 12 graduates were recruited directly into the Careers Service in 2004-05. A further six employees completed four modules of the course during 2005-06.
Sammy Wilson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many children under the age of 16 from (a) Protestant and (b) Roman Catholic community background were living in poverty in each of the last five years. 
Mr. Hanson: It is too early to determine reliable trends broken down by age and religion from the recently introduced Family Resources Survey. However, by amalgamating two years data together it is possible to provide an estimate of the number of Roman Catholic and Protestant children in poverty. The average figures for 2003-04 and 2004-05 are presented as follows in terms of both before housing costs and after housing costs.
|2003-04 and 2004-05||BHC||AHC|
1. Numbers are rounded to the nearest 100.
2. As with any sample survey the numbers quoted in the aforementioned table are subject to sampling error.
3. Data was sourced from Households Below Average Income Northern Ireland (HBAI NI). The HBAI NI is based on information collected from the Family Resources Survey (FRS). The FRS was first run in Northern Ireland in 2002-03.
4. The HBAI is the main source of income poverty measures throughout the UK.
5. Poverty is defined as households who have an income less than 60 per cent. of the contemporary GB median income.
6. Children defined as all under 16, or unmarried 16 to 18-year-olds in full-time education.
7. Income before housing costs (BHC) includes the following main components: usual net earnings from employment; profit or loss from self-employment (losses are treated as a negative income); all social security benefits (including housing benefit, social fund, maternity, funeral and community care grants but excluding social fund loans) and tax credits; income from occupational and private pensions; investment income; maintenance payments, if a person receives them directly; income from educational grants and scholarships (including, for students, top-up loans and parental contributions); the cash value of certain forms of income in kind (free school meals, free welfare milk, free school milk and free TV licence for those aged 75 and over).
8. Income is net of the following items: income tax payments; national insurance contributions; domestic rates (this includes water and sewerage charges for Northern Ireland); contributions to occupational pension schemes (including all additional voluntary contributions (AVCs) to occupational pension schemes, and any contributions to personal pensions); all maintenance and child support payments, which are deducted from the income of the person making the payment and parental contributions to students living away from home.
9. Income after housing costs (AHC) is derived by deducting a measure of housing costs from BHC income measure. Housing costs include the following: rent (gross of housing benefit); domestic rates; mortgage interest payments (net of tax relief); structural insurance premiums (for owner occupiers); ground rent and service charges.
10. Religion is based on the religion of the household reference person and therefore takes no account of mixed marriages.
11. As religion is not a grossing control factor for the Family Resources Survey all figures relating to this issue have to be treated with caution.
12. The response rate for the 2002-03 Family Resources Survey was considerably lower than for subsequent years and therefore all results from this year have to treated with caution. For further details please refer to the methodology section in the 2002-03 publication:
13. The following confidence intervals need to be applied to the data to be statistically valid.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|