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|Table 2: Number of patients seen in the previous 24 months ending 30 June, 30 September and 31 December 2006 in the specified PCT|
|30 June 2006||30 September 2006||31 December 2006|
| Notes: 1. PCT boundaries are as at 1 October 2006. 2. Patients have been identified by using surname, first initial, gender and date of birth. 3. The age of the patient as at the last day of the 24 month period is used to allocate between adult or child in the most recent form processed. 4. Child patient registrations are aged 0-17 and adults are aged 18 and over. Source: The Information Centre for health and social care. NHS Business Services Authority.|
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many contracts her Department has with (a) Alliance Medical, (b) Amicus Healthcare, (c) BUPA Healthcare, (d) Capio Healthcare, (e) Clincienta, (f) Mercury Health, (g) Nations Healthcare, (h) Netcare Healthcare, (i) Nuffield Hospitals, (j) Partnership Health Group and (k) UKSH; what the purpose of the contract is in each case; how long each contract is for; and how much she estimates will have been paid in total via these contracts in 2006-07. 
|(1 )IS ECN providers are members of a framework and are paid on a per procedure basis and do not have five year contracts.|
|(1) 2006figures are for the first nine months only|
Prescription information is taken from the Prescription Cost Analysis (PCA) system, supplied by the Prescription Pricing Authority (PPA), and is based on a full analysis of all prescriptions dispensed in the community i.e. by community pharmacists and appliance contractors, dispensing doctors, and prescriptions submitted by prescribing doctors for items personally administered in England. Also included are prescriptions written in Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man but dispensed in England. The data do not cover drugs dispensed in hospitals, including mental health trusts, or private prescriptions.
Mr. Greg Knight: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment she has made of the availability of (a) phentermine, (b) diethylpropiom, (c) reductil and (d) orlistat from internet suppliers; what mechanisms are in place to promote appropriate medical supervision for those obtaining and using drugs through the internet; and if she will make a statement. 
Caroline Flint: The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency routinely monitors medicines being offered for sale on the Internet and is concerned about the increase in the online availability of medicines, including slimming pills.
In the United Kingdom (UK), there are strict legal controls on the retail sale, supply and advertisement of medicinal products. These controls apply without distinction to medicines sold or supplied through Internet transactions and mail order.
Slimming drugs are, generally speaking, classified as prescription only medicines (POM) and are available only after a consultation with a healthcare practitioner. Products purchased from Internet sites cannot be guaranteed for their quality, safety and efficacy, nor can their effects on patients be monitored. For these reasons, the supply of POMs is strictly controlled in the UK and breaches in regulatory requirements are investigated.
Additionally, specific information relating to slimming products and other medicines considered to be at risk of counterfeiting are circulated to stakeholders in order to increase vigilance through more focused surveillance and inspections.
Mr. Malins: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when she expects the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence to publish a technical appraisal on naltrexore as a treatment for relapse prevention; and if she will make a statement. 
Caroline Flint [holding answer 27 March 2007]: The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE), published a technical appraisal on naltrexone as a treatment for relapse prevention on 24 January 2007.
The National Treatment Agency (NTA) is supporting the Department in developing an implementation strategy for the dissemination of the NICE technology appraisal on naltrexone and their other current work relating to drug treatment. This strategy will seek to ensure that complementary initiatives undertaken by NICE and the NTA are
disseminated in a coherent and co-ordinated way to inform the commissioners and providers of drug treatment.
Mrs. Humble: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what assessment she has made of the effectiveness of the Yellow Card system for reporting adverse reactions to drugs; how many incidents were reported in each of the past three years; what estimate she has made of the level of under-reporting in each of the last three years; and what steps she is taking to improve matters; 
(3) what assessment she has made of the merits of extending the remit of the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency in order to allow it to monitor adverse reactions to unlicensed drugs. 
Caroline Flint: The Yellow Card Scheme is used to collect reports of suspected adverse drug reactions (ADRs) associated with any marketed medicinal product, including those available on prescription or purchased from a pharmacy, or a general retail outlet. The scheme encompasses unlicensed as well as licensed products, including herbal products.
The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) and Commission for Human Medicines (CHM) are continually working to increase the quality and quantity of reports received via the Yellow Card Scheme.
|Number of reports|
In 2003, an independent review of the Yellow Card Scheme strongly endorsed the value and importance of the Scheme for public health and the benefit of patients. The MHRA is currently developing a strategy in consultation with the CHM to build on these recommendations in order to further strengthen reporting to the Yellow Card Scheme.
It is recognised that voluntary spontaneous reporting systems such as the Yellow Card Scheme are associated with an unknown level of under-reporting. It has been estimated that 10 per cent. of serious ADRs and between 2 and 4 per cent. of non-serious ADRs are reported and that serious reactions are five times more likely to be reported than non-serious reactions.
The value of introducing mandatory reporting of suspected ADRs by healthcare professionals has been considered on several occasions, most recently during the independent review of the Yellow Card Scheme. Available evidence indicates that there is no clear increase in rates of reporting in countries with mandatory reporting when compared with those where
reporting is voluntary. Furthermore there would be practical difficulties in enforcing mandatory reporting. The Independent Review did not recommend a mandatory system for suspected ADR reporting in the United Kingdom.
Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when the Criminal Investigation Unit of the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency first began investigating the withholding of data from clinical trials of paroxetine; when she expects the Criminal Investigation Unit to take a decision on whether to refer the case to the police; whether she has the ultimate authority to decide whether a matter under investigation by the Criminal Investigation Unit is referred to the police; and if she will make a statement. 
Caroline Flint: The criminal investigation into whether GlaxoSmithKline PLC withheld from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) information from paediatric clinical trials of their drug Seroxat (the United Kingdom brand name for paroxetine) was commenced by the Enforcement and Intelligence Group of the MHRA on 1 October 2003.The investigation is ongoing.
Criminal investigations into alleged breaches of medicines regulations are the statutory responsibility of the Secretary of State and are carried out by authorised officers in the Enforcement and Intelligence Group at MHRA.
Mr. Jenkin: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many (a) hospital nurses, (b) junior hospital doctors and (c) other nurses were employed in the Essex Rivers Healthcare Trust in (i) 2005-06 and (ii) 2006-07. 
Ms Rosie Winterton [holding answer 23 March 2007]: The information is not collected centrally in the form requested. However, the following table shows doctors in training alongside nursing, midwifery and health visiting staff figures as at 30 September 2005.
|Hospital and Community Health Services (HCHS): Doctors in training and nursing, midwifery and health visiting staff within Essex Rivers Healthcare National Health Service Trust|
|Essex Rivers Healthcare NHS Trust as at 30 September 2005||Number (headcount)|
The Information Centre for health and social care medical and dental workforce census.
The Information Centre for health and social care non-medical workforce census.
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