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Hospital Visits

Mr. Iain Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what research her Department has undertaken on the possible effect on health and recovery rates of visits to patients in hospital by family and friends. [115599]

Caroline Flint: None.

Independent Treatment Centres

Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when she will make an announcement on the establishment of independent treatment centres in Essex. [114563]

Andy Burnham: The proposed establishment of independent treatment centres in Essex has reached preferred bidder status. Mercury Health has been selected as the preferred bidder. Subject to further commercial negotiations, contract signature is anticipated in summer 2007. Initial services are expected to commence in autumn 2007, with main services expected to commence in autumn 2008.

Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what requirement is made of independent treatment centres to contribute towards the training costs incurred for staff previously employed by the national health service. [114564]

Andy Burnham: Independent sector treatment centre (ISTC) providers are not required to make any special payment to the national health service to contribute towards the training costs previously incurred for staff previously employed in the NHS.

The provider of an ISTC is responsible for ensuring that all its staff receive such training, supervision and induction as is necessary to comply with best practice and the terms of the contract for the provision of services.


Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the answer of 8 November 2006, Official Report, column 1830W, on influenza, which individuals are conducting the independent review of the arrangements in place for the seasonal influenza vaccination programme; when she expects the report of the review to be submitted to her Department; whether she expects to implement the findings of the review in time for the 2007-08 winter influenza immunisation programme; and if she will make a statement. [114935]

Caroline Flint: The final report of the independent review into the seasonal influenza programme will be submitted to the Department by the end of February 2007. The authors of the report are Dr. Ian Spencer and Dr. Jim Kennedy. An assessment will be made of the recommendations which should be implemented in 2007-08.

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IT Projects

Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many information technology projects within the responsibility of her Department, its agencies and their predecessors have been cancelled since 1997; what the total cost was of each project at cancellation; and if she will make a statement. [105482]

Mr. Ivan Lewis: The Department does not hold records for information technology (IT) projects
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completed before financial year 1999-2000. IT projects managed by the Department and its agencies with a full business case in excess of £100,000 or more, cancelled in financial year 1999-2000 onwards are listed below by:

Department of Health: Projects cancelled 2000-07
Project name Project purpose Financial year of cancellation Full business case cost of project (£) Costs incurred up to point of cancellation (£)

Communications resource management system

Improve financial management of resources used by the Departments communications team





Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what her policy is on the use of Macugen; and what the estimated annual cost of dosage per case is. [114527]

Caroline Flint: The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) is expected to publish guidance on Macugen as a treatment for the wet form of age-related macular degeneration in October 2007.

Where new interventions have not yet been appraised by NICE, primary care trusts are responsible for deciding whether they should be used, taking full account of the available evidence.

No information is yet available on the annual cost per patient of prescribing Macugen in the national health service.

Management Consultants

Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what application process management consultants go through before they are appointed to work for an NHS trust. [101832]

Ms Rosie Winterton: The use of external consultants are often required when carrying complex services where the required expertise may not be readily available within the trust to give the technical input necessary to support the tendering process.

To support trusts in the procurement of external consultancy services, a procurement guide is available from the NHS Purchasing and Supply Agency (PASA) website.

A framework contract for consultancy services is available to national health service trusts. This has been produced jointly between NHS PASA and Office of Government Commerce buying Solutions. The total current number of suppliers is 257 including categories such as human resources and financial services.

The national framework agreements are not mandatory, and therefore some NHS trusts buy services from other sources. The NHS trusts are expected to follow European Union procurement guidelines dependent on the size of the contract. The evaluation criteria are likely to include capability, processed approach and whole life costs.

Maternity Care

Mr. Jamie Reed: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what the recommended transfer time is for women in labour to a consultant-led maternity unit; [114650]

(2) how many transfers of women in labour from the maternity unit of the West Cumberland hospital to the Cumberland infirmary have taken place in the last two financial years. [114654]

Mr. Ivan Lewis: There is no recommended transfer time for women in labour to a consultant-led maternity unit because these situations are dependent on the urgency of the case, distance involved, routes possible, mode of transport, traffic and weather conditions. If the transfer is by ambulance, the response time should equate to the standards for the ambulance service.

The requested information on transfers between West Cumberland hospital and Cumberland infirmary is not collected centrally.

Medical Research

Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will consider amending the remit of the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence as part of the work being undertaken to assist in meeting the Government's target of making the UK a world-class environment for medical research. [114055]

Caroline Flint: The review of United Kingdom health research funding undertaken by Sir David
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Cooksey and published on 6 December 2006 took full account of the need to maintain and build on the United Kingdom's world-leading position in medical research and innovation. The Government will take forward the recommendations made in the review team’s report as part of this work. We have no plans to review the remit and scope of the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE). NICE already factors impact on innovation into its appraisal work.

Mental Health

Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what projects have been undertaken by her Department aimed at targeting inequalities and discrimination in mental health since May 1997; and what the cost was of each. [115647]

Ms Rosie Winterton: The principal current campaigns are: Shift, Tackling Stigma And Discrimination, The National Social Inclusion Project (NSIP) and the Delivering Race Equality In Mental Health Care Action Plan (DRE).

Shift is a five year initiative that began in 2004, intended to reduce the stigma and discrimination experienced by people on grounds of mental ill health, for example, in employment and the media. It is managed by the National Institute for Mental Health in England (NIMHE) and funded by the Department. It received £900,000 in 2003-04 and £1 million in 2004-05. More information about the campaign is available at .

NSIP is a three year programme, led by NIMHE, co-ordinating cross-Government action to implement the Social Exclusion Unit's report ‘Mental Health and Social Exclusion’, published in June 2004. It is designed to reduce and remove the barriers to employment, mainstream services and community participation for those with mental health problems. NSIP's budget is £650,000. More information is available at .

DRE is a five year programme launched in January 2005. It addresses the acknowledged inequalities in access to mental health services, experience of services and outcomes from services that some people from black and minority ethnic communities can suffer. Resources for the programme include £16 million annually in primary care trust baseline allocations to fund 500 community development workers and around £2 million to fund 80 local community engagement projects. More information is available at .

The Shift campaign's predecessors were the ‘Mind Out’ anti-stigma campaign that ran from 2001 until 2004 at a total cost of £3.473 million/and the ‘Impact Strategy’, 1997 - 2001, for public information about mental health issues. Total cost £5.7 million.

Milton Keynes Primary Care Trust

Mr. Lancaster: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when she expects Milton Keynes Primary Care Trust to announce measures to meet its revised budget. [112773]

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Andy Burnham: It is the responsibility of primary care trusts (PCTs) and strategic health authorities to analyse their local situation and develop plans, in liaison with their local national health service (NHS) trusts and primary care providers, to deliver high quality NHS services while achieving financial balance.

In the minority of NHS organisations with deficits, the targets we have set, for example on waiting times and access to cancer treatment, are being met. The overall quality of services to patients continues to improve. However, we do not underestimate the tough decisions needed by a minority of organisations to restore financial balance. Our performance and turnaround teams continue to work with the most challenged organisations to reduce forecast deficits.

National Institute for Health Research

Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when she expects to establish the National Institute for Health Research as an Executive Agency of the Department of Health. [115015]

Caroline Flint: The recommendation in Sir David Cooksey’s review of United Kingdom health research funding is that the executive agency should be set up by April 2009. The Department has accepted the recommendation.

Newcastle City Council: Social Services Provision

Mr. Nicholas Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what discussions her officials have had with Newcastle City Council on the standard of (a) adult and (b) children’s social services provided by the authority. [113526]

Mr. Ivan Lewis: Officials of the Department have had no discussions with Newcastle City Council regarding adult social services. Children’s services are the responsibility of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Education and Skills.

I am informed by the Chair of the Commission for Social Care Inspection (CSCI) that in CSCI’s “Performance Ratings for Adults’ Social Services in England”, published in November 2006, Newcastle City Council’s rating fell from three to two stars. As a result of this fall, CSCI is in the process of discussing with Newcastle City Council the plan for service inspections to be carried out in the 2006-07 performance inspection year.

NHS: Barnet

Mr. Dismore: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many residents of Barnet primary care trust area received (a) out-patient and (b) in-patient treatment in (i) 1997-98 and (ii) 2005-06; how many have received each type of treatment in 2006-07; and if she will make a statement. [114267]

Mr. Ivan Lewis: The out-patient data requested is not held centrally. The following table shows the latest
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figures available for finished in-patient admissions for residents of Barnet primary care trust.

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Count of finished in year admissions (in-patient data) and appointment count (out-patient data) for residents of Barnet PCT—data for NHS hospitals England
PCT of residence (based on patients’ postcode) PCT of responsibility (based on patients’ GP postcode)
Data year In-patients admissions Out-patients appointments attended In-patients admissions Out-patients appointments attended











n/a = data not available.
In-patients footnotes:
Finished in-year admissions:
A finished in-year admission is the first period of in-patient care under one consultant within one healthcare provider, excluding admissions beginning before 1 April at the start of the data year. Please note that admissions do not represent the number of in-patients, as a person may have more than one admission within the year.
Data quality:
1. Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) are compiled from data sent by over 300 NHS Trusts and Primary Care Trusts (PCTs) in England.
2. The Health and Social Care Information Centre liaises closely with these organisations to encourage submission of complete and valid data and seeks to minimise inaccuracies and the effect of missing and invalid data via HES processes. While this brings about improvement over time, some shortcomings remain.
Ungrossed data:
Figures have not been adjusted for shortfalls in data (i.e. the data are ungrossed).
Primary care trust (PCT) and strategic health authority (SHA) data quality:
PCT and SHA data was 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 is 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 is 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.
Hospital Episode Statistics (HES), The Information Centre for Health and Social Care
Out-patients footnotes:
Attended or did not attend:
This indicates whether or not a patient attended an appointment. If the patient did not attend an indication of whether or not advanced warning was given. Analysis of ‘did not attend’ and ‘cancellations’ must be restricted to only the trusts which return data.
Hospital Episode Statistics (HES); Out-patients, The Information Centre for Health and Social Care

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