Previous Section Index Home Page

27 Feb 2007 : Column 1282W—continued

27 Feb 2007 : Column 1283W
Area Target Target date

Referral to treatment

Waiting time from GP referral to treatment

18 weeks

December 2008

Waiting time for inpatient admission from decision to admit.

26 weeks

December 2005

Waiting time from GP referral to first outpatient appointment

13 weeks

December 2005

Waiting time for diagnostic tests

Milestones towards referral to treatment target:

26 weeks for MRI/CT scans

March 2006

13 weeks for all tests by March 2007

March 2007

Cancer waiting times

Maximum one month wait from urgent GP referral to treatment guaranteed for children's and testicular cancers and acute leukaemia


Maximum one month wait from diagnosis to treatment for breast cancer


Maximum two month wait from urgent GP referral to treatment for breast cancer


Maximum one month wait from diagnosis to treatment for all cancers


Maximum two month wait from urgent GP referral to treatment for all cancers


Accident and Emergency—total time spent in A&E from arrival to admission, transfer or discharge

Number of patients spending less than four hours in A&E departments and the number of patients spending more than four hours in A&E departments.

98 per cent. of patients spending a maximum of four hours in A&E from arrival to admission, transfer or discharge

December 2004. The target became an operational standard during 2005.


75 per cent. within eight minutes


—response times to category A calls

95 per cent. within 19 minutes

—response times to category B calls

95 per cent. within 19 minutes


Waiting time from GP referral to attendance at rapid access chest pain clinics

2 weeks


Sexual health

Patients attending GUM clinics who are offered an appointment within 48 hours of contacting a service

48 hours


Primary care access

GP appointment within 48 hours

December 2004

Appointment with a primary health care professional within 24 hours

December 2004

Nurses: Manpower

Jeremy Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many stoma care nurse posts are sponsored by the ostomy industry; and what the annual value is to NHS trusts of the sponsorship. [119589]

27 Feb 2007 : Column 1284W

Mr. Ivan Lewis: This information is not collected centrally. It is for local trusts to commission and deploy stoma care nurses in accordance with their local needs. Where agreements have been made for alternate funding of these posts, this is a local matter.

Parkinson’s Disease: Hertfordshire

Mike Penning: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what steps the Government are taking to increase the quality of treatment available for those diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in Hertfordshire; and if she will make a statement; [120014]

(2) how many Parkinson's disease specialist nurses there were in Hertfordshire in each year since 1997; and if she will make a statement; [120016]

(3) how much was allocated to patients diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in Hertfordshire in each of the last five years; and if she will make a statement; [120017]

(4) what assessment she has made of the funding required for Parkinson's disease nurse specialists in (a) Hertfordshire and (b) East of England strategic health authority; and if she will make a statement. [120018]

Mr. Ivan Lewis: The information requested is not held centrally. However, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence have published, on 26 June 2006, detailed clinical guidelines on the diagnosis, management and treatment of adults with Parkinson's disease in primary and secondary care. This includes the issue of access to specialist nurses.

The national service framework for long-term neurological conditions, which specifically included Parkinson's Disease, will ensure faster diagnosis, more rapid treatment and a comprehensive package of care for those living with long-term conditions.

Patients: Travel

Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much has been spent on the hospital travel cost scheme in each region. [120572]

Andy Burnham: The Department does not collect information on the cost of the hospital travel cost scheme.

Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the low income criteria are for qualification for the Hospital Travel Cost Scheme. [120574]

Andy Burnham: Individuals, and their dependants, in receipt of income support, income-based jobseeker’s allowance, pension credit guarantee credit, child’s tax credit, working tax credit with child’s tax credit or working tax credit with a disability element are able to receive such help. Others may be entitled to full or limited help under the national health service low income scheme.

Picture Archiving and Communication System

Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the (a) original planned and (b) latest
27 Feb 2007 : Column 1285W
timetable is for delivery of the Picture Archiving and Communication System; what progress has been made with each local service provider system; and what the (i) original and (ii) latest timetable is for each local service provider system. [112547]

Caroline Flint: Plans originally developed in autumn 2004 assumed that all deployments of picture archiving and communications systems (PACS) delivered through the national programme for information technology would be completed by the end of March 2007. These plans were subsequently revised to reflect delay due to the impact of a Judicial Review by an unsuccessful bidder which failed in its challenge to the procurement process in the courts, and to the need to re-negotiate the PACS contract in the programme’s north west and west midlands cluster area. Despite this delay the majority of installations, including 100 per cent. of those planned in London and the south of England, will have been completed by this date, in line with plans for 100 per cent. completion across the national health service in England by the end of 2007.

As at the end of January 2007, 69 NHS trusts had implemented PACS over a period of 21 months as a result of the national programme, and they are currently estimated to be treating in the region of 160,000 patients each week using the technology. This compares to 43 implementations over 14 years in the period prior to the inception of the programme. Including trusts where PACS had been installed prior to the programme, more than 65 per cent. of acute trusts in England are now using PACS, making estimated savings of up to a third of a million pounds each per annum on the cost of x-ray films and processing.

Local service providers are currently installing PACS at an average rate of four trusts a month. Information on progress in individual local service provider areas is in the table.

Region Local service provider Percentage of planned installations complete Trusts remaining









East and East Midlands




North West, West Midlands




North East




(1) Contract re-negotiated March 2006 with first live site in July 2006.

PACS systems form a component additional to those originally described in the 2002 “Delivering 21(st) Century IT Support to the NHS” procurement strategy for the national programme. The record of successful, and on-budget, deployment to date is a reflection of the robust nature of the programme’s approach to procurement and management of its suppliers.

Pregnancy: Folic Acid

Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent research she has (a) commissioned and (b) evaluated on whether pregnant women who take folic acid supplements reduce the risk of having a baby with cleft lip or palate; and if she will make a statement. [119949]

27 Feb 2007 : Column 1286W

Mr. Ivan Lewis: The Department has commissioned no such research. However, the Department already recommends that women trying to get pregnant should take a daily 400 microgram (meg) folic acid supplement from the time they stop using contraception until the 12th week of pregnancy. Women should also eat foods containing folate, the natural form of folic acid, such as green vegetables and brown rice as well as fortified bread and breakfast cereals. Folic acid helps prevent neural tube defects such as spina bifida in the newborn.

Primary Health Care

Alistair Burt: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what representations she has made to strategic health authorities to ensure they consult upon and deliver a work force strategy for primary care; and if she will make a statement. [118522]

Andy Burnham: The national health service in England operating framework for 2007-08 sets out the framework for delivery of the health and service priorities. The Department will apply key assurance tests to strategic health authority plans to ensure they give assurances on delivering national commitments and reconcile the three elements of finance, work force and activity.

Sponsored Events

Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if she will make a statement on the nature of the sponsored events provided to her Department in 2006 by (a) Club 18-30 Big Reunion and (b) Wrigleys Oral Healthcare referred to on page 156 of her Department's annual report. [117117]

Mr. Ivan Lewis: Partnerships with youth brands have provided a valuable channel of communication to young people from the outset of the cross-Government FRANK drugs information campaign which is jointly funded by the Department, the Home Office and the Department for Education and Skills.

In the campaign year 2005-06, Club 18-30 and The Big Reunion, both brands of Uptrips, owned by Thomas Cook Travel, provided a wide range of communications and distribution services to the FRANK campaign free of charge to the Department.

27 Feb 2007 : Column 1287W
Summer in-resort activities

FRANK competition on Club 18-30 website with production of an e-flyer

Audience of 100,000 approximately

FRANK drugs advice section on Club 18-30 website


FRANK logo and contact details printed on ticket wallets

Distributed to 40,000 people approximately

Prize of a weekend workshop for two people at the Subbass DJ academy

‘In room’ welcome packs which included FRANK business cards, Drugs abroad leaflet, FRANK tissue packs etc.

Distributed to approximately 65,000 people including the cost of shipping, warehousing and distribution of FRANK collateral in resorts abroad

FRANK artwork supplied for drugs advice section on resort notice boards

100 hotels

Advice on drugs conveyed by club 18-30 representatives in resorts at welcome meetings

18,000 people summer season reached during summer season

Autumn BIG Reunion weekend event in Scarborough

FRANK literature and collateral inserted into check in bags for attendees and VIPs

9,000 attendees

Airtime for FRANK advertisements on the Big Reunion TV channel throughout event

2 advertisements

FRANK logo on screens in the main arenas throughout event

5 arenas

FRANK banners placed in the different rooms around the event

8 banners

Logo and link to website from homepage of Big Reunion website


Production of e-newsletters with editorial around FRANK/drugs to attendees pre and post weekend

2 e-newsletters

Chief dental officers and their advisers from the European Union, G8 countries and the Commonwealth attended a week-long programme of dental events in England to mark the UK's presidency of the European Union. The programme, organised by the Department of Health, ran from 5 to 9 September 2005, and spanned a number of events and locations. Some of the costs associated with this programme were met by sponsorship from Wrigley's Oral Healthcare.

Next Section Index Home Page