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26 Mar 2007 : Column 1360W—continued

RAF Lyneham

Mr. Gray: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what extra resources he plans to make available to RAF Lyneham when they take over responsibility for military repatriation on 1 April. [129646]

Mr. Ingram [holding answer 23 March 2007]: An assessment has been made of the implications for the Station from which it was determined that the task could be absorbed within existing manpower resources. Any financial costs resulting from the ceremonies can be claimed from the Contingency Fund.

Service Personnel: South African Citizens

Mr. Harper: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 17 January 2007, Official Report, column 1173W, on service personnel: South African citizens, what progress has been made on the officials’ visit to South Africa; and if he will make a statement. [128183]

Derek Twigg [holding answer 19 March 2007]: The draft South African legislation on mercenaries and membership of the armed forces of other nations has completed its parliamentary process, and is currently with the President awaiting his assent although we are unable to establish when and if this may be given. Active engagement with the South African Department of Defence is on-going and we hope to secure a date for the officials’ visit at the earliest opportunity.

Type 45 Destroyers

Mrs. Curtis-Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what his estimate is of the minimum number of Type 45 destroyers necessary to provide area air defence for the fleet; and if he will make a statement. [128577]

Mr. Ingram: I refer my hon. Friend to the answer I gave on 10 May 2006, Official Report, column 290W, to the hon. Member for New Forest, East (Dr. Lewis).

Unidentified Flying Objects

Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much was spent producing the report Unidentified Aerial Phenomena in the UK Air Defence Region; who the author was; what the author's qualifications in this subject were; to whom the report was circulated; what actions were taken on the recommendations of the report; and if he will make a statement. [128505]

Mr. Ingram: It is not possible to provide accurate details as to the cost of producing the Unidentified Aerial Phenomena report as this was one of several tasks that were included within a single contract and detailed costings for each of these tasks is not available. However, it is estimated that the overall cost was approximately £50,000.

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The author of the report was a contractor and was employed by the Defence Intelligence Staff (DIS) on a long-term contract. Further details of the author, including the name, are being withheld under the terms of the Data Protection Act 1998.

The report was circulated within the DIS and to other branches of the Ministry of Defence and RAF. As recommended by the report, the DIS ceased to monitor unidentified aerial phenomena sighting reports (and therefore reaped a saving in staff time) as they contained no information of Defence Intelligence interest and no further action was taken.


Bexley Community Health NHS Trust

Mr. Evennett: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much funding was provided by her Department to Bexley Care Trust for (a) prevention and (b) treatment of (i) sexually transmitted diseases, (ii) obesity, (iii) diabetes and (iv) alcoholism in each of the last five years. [126875]

Andy Burnham: All primary care trusts (PCTs), including Bexley Care Trust are responsible for meeting the overall health needs of their community from their mainstream funding—including the prevention and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases, obesity, diabetes and alcoholism.

The 2006-07 and 2007-08 revenue allocations to PCTs separately identify £211 million in 2006-07 and £342 million in 2007-08 to support the initiatives set out in the White Paper, “Choosing Health: making healthy choices easier” (such as sexual health modernisation, action on diet, activity and obesity and alcohol interventions).

It is for PCTs to determine how to use the funding allocated to them to commission services to meet the health care needs of their local populations. PCTs were informed of their shares of the £342 million funding but not their shares of each initiative.

Bowel Cancer Screening

Mr. Baron: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what progress has been made towards (a) establishing and (b) evaluating pilots of flexible sigmoidoscopy as part of bowel cancer screening for people in their fifties. [129630]

Ms Rosie Winterton [holding answer 23 March 2007]: Flexible sigmoidoscopy (FS) is a potential way of screening for bowel cancer. A large clinical trial, funded by the Medical Research Council and Cancer Research UK, has looked into screening healthy people for bowel cancer using FS. The final results are not expected until 2008 but early results have been very promising and have shown that this type of screening will help to prevent bowel cancer and be cost effective. However, we do not know yet how many lives it could save. Based on these promising results, the Government are now funding a pilot study at St. Mark’s hospital in London to examine the feasibility of FS screening performed by specialist nurses. The pilot is inviting
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2000 men and women aged 58 and 59. The study is costing £400,000, and is expected to report in 2008.

Breast Feeding

Annette Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans she has to promote breast feeding in 2007-08. [129365]

Caroline Flint: The Department is planning a comprehensive year-round communications package, including marketing support that will be launched at the National Breast Feeding Awareness Week to be held on 13-19 May. We are in the process of developing activities such as television and radio filler advertising, updating website, and PR activity as well as developing educational and promotional materials. We are also working with UNICEF in developing joint publications on infant feeding.

The Department is continuing to work with the Food Standards Agency on the implementation of the European Union Directive on infant formula and follow-on formula. In addition, we have appointed a new National Infant Feeding Adviser, who will be actively involved in promoting breast feeding by developing activities locally to help increase breast feeding rates and supporting health professionals.

Annette Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much her Department spent promoting breast feeding in each year between 2002-03 and 2006-07; which organisations received such funding in each year; and for what purposes funding was provided in each year. [129366]

Caroline Flint: Since 2002, the Department has funded a range of activities promoting breast feeding and infant feeding. The following table sets out the funding provided each year for breast feeding promotion from 2002-07.

Financial year Departmental spend on breast feeding promotion (£)











Most of the funding available was spent centrally in developing promotional and educational materials, PR activities for the breast feeding campaigns, developing and updating websites, conferences and supporting the work of the National Network of Breast Feeding Co-ordinators.

In 2004-05, the Department spent approximately £350,000 in developing and distributing a resource pack for health professionals. Since 2005, the Department provided approximately £12,000 to the breast feeding network in support of developing a national helpline number on breast feeding. In addition, the Department has also provided grants to four voluntary organisations under the Section 64 Grants Scheme to promote their work on breast feeding. We have provided core grant of £13,000 for 2007-08 to the Association of Breast feeding Mothers.

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Care Homes: Fees and Charges

Mr. Graham Stuart: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what estimate she has made of the number of people in residential care homes of whom third-party top-up fees are (a) sought and (b) received; what estimate she has made of the average top-up fee paid in respect of such people; and what steps the Government are taking to prevent such fees being regressive; [124713]

(2) if she will bring forward proposals to reduce the number of care home residents who are affected by third-party top-up fees; and if she will make a statement. [124717]

Andy Burnham: This information is not collected centrally in the form requested. However, the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) conducted a United Kingdom wide survey of ‘Care Homes For Their Care Homes For Older People in the UK’ report, published in May 2005. The OFT found that the average care home in the UK had 32 places of which 29 were occupied. Of these, seven, around 24 per cent. were paid for by a combination of the local authority and a third-party top-up. The UK average third-party top-up was £65.33p a week.

The detail of contracting arrangements between local councils and care homes is a matter for local decision. The Government do not set or recommend rates at which councils contract with care homes. We think it is important that councils are able to tailor contracts to specific local circumstances. However, the Government have made available record levels of funding for social care. Since 1997, Government grants for local services, including social care, have increased by £28.4 billion or 39 per cent. in real terms.

This substantial funding is making a real difference. Although, in their annual ‘Care of the Elderly: UK Market Survey 2006’ report, independent market analysts Laing and Buisson reported that around half of local authorities increased the fees they pay to care homes by less than 3.5 per cent. This follows a three year period, 2002-03 to 2004-05 during which Laing and Buisson reported that payments increased at an unprecedented rate. This is clear evidence that local authorities have been using the additional resources provided by central Government to increase payments to care homes and rebalance the care home market.

Care Homes: Finance

Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many residential care home places there are in each strategic health authority (SHA); and what the average cost per place is in each SHA. [126552]

Andy Burnham: I am informed by the chair of the Commission for Social Care Inspection (CSCI) that data on the number of care homes and places are not collected by strategic health authority area. CSCI is able to supply information on the number of care homes and places in its regions, of which there are nine in England. These data are shown in the following table.

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Number of registered adult care and nursing homes and places by CSCI region
Region Homes Places

East Midlands









North East



North West



South East



South West



West Midlands



Yorkshire and Humberside






Numbers include residential homes for older people and for younger adults (aged 18-65).
CSCI registration and inspection database—snapshot on 13 March 2007.

Information on the costs of care home places is not collected centrally.

Cervical Cancer: Screening

Jim Dobbin: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps she is taking (a) to reduce the decline in and (b) to increase the numbers of women attending for cervical screening. [129613]

Ms Rosie Winterton: I refer the hon. Member to the answer given on 7 March 2007, Official Report, column 2094-95W.

Community Health Services: Tolls

Mr. Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate she has made of the potential impact of road pricing on funding allocated to community health workers. [128683]

Dr. Ladyman: I have been asked to reply and refer to my answer given today to question UIN 126159.


Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment she has made of levels of motivation of doctors in the NHS. [126626]

Ms Rosie Winterton: The Department takes the welfare of all national health service employees very seriously. Morale among NHS staff can be difficult to gauge; however, the Healthcare Commission NHS annual staff surveys in 2005 indicated that staff remain generally satisfied, with job satisfaction identified as 73.78 per cent. across all staff, 69.32 per cent. within acute trusts and all medical staff in acute trusts 73.31 per cent.

Health Services: Greater London

Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether her Department has carried out equality impact assessments of (a) the decision to
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close the Maudsley hospital 24-hour emergency clinic, (b) the reduction in the budget of the South London and Maudsley NHS hospital trust for 2007-08, (c) the reduction in the budget of the Southwark primary trust for 2007-08 and (d) the reduction in the budget of the Lambeth primary care trust for 2007-08. [130043]

Andy Burnham: I refer the hon. Member to the answers provided, 20 March 2007, Official Report, columns 858-59W and 861-62W.

Health Services: Gambling

Lorely Burt: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans she has to provide additional services to treat gambling addiction in areas approved for the licensing of a large casino, with particular reference to Solihull. [119005]

Ms Rosie Winterton: Problem gamblers, who are entitled to treatment under the national health service,
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can access services in primary care and secondary care including specialised mental health and addiction services. There are currently no central plans to provide additional services in areas approved for the licensing of a large casino. However, we will continue to be responsible for assessing and commissioning services to meet the needs of the populations that they serve.

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