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Mr. Greg Knight: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what restrictions are in place to ensure that pet food manufacturers do not add unsuitable ingredients to pet food; why such restrictions do not extend to a ban on both sugar and salt; and if she will make a statement. 
Caroline Flint: There is extensive legislation in place covering the composition of pet food, which is designed to protect the health of pet animals. This includes maximum permitted levels for various contaminants and only substances that have undergone an official assessment for safety, quality and efficacy can be used as additives in pet foods. It is also an offence to sell pet foods that are deleterious to pet animals.
It is not necessary to ban sugar and salt as the use of such ingredients is controlled by this legislation. A wide range of ingredients, including sugar and salt, are used in manufactured pet foods to satisfy the nutritional requirements of animals and for palatability and technological reasons.
Dr. Stoate: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether funding for the carers special support grant will continue to be made available to local authorities after March 2008; and if she will make a statement on the funding of carers services over the next five years. 
To ask the Secretary of State for Health when she expects the Joint Committee on Vaccinations and Immunisations (JCVI) to make a recommendation as to whether a national immunisation programme for the human papilloma virus should be implemented; and on which dates the JCVI human papilloma virus
subgroup (a) has met and (b) is expected to meet in 2007. 
Caroline Flint: No decisions will be taken on introducing human papilloma virus (HPV) vaccines into the immunisation programme until the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has presented its advice to Ministers for their consideration.
The JCVI is in the process of thoroughly examining the vaccine safety, efficacy and cost-effectiveness evidence concerning HPV vaccines. The work is being taken forward by a sub-group of JCVI, which met in May and September (2006) and in February 2007. Further meetings of the sub-group will be scheduled as required.
Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) whether she has held discussions with the Department for Education and Skills on the possible implementation of a schools-based vaccination programme for human papilloma virus vaccine; 
Caroline Flint: The Department is seeking advice on the new human papilloma virus vaccine from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) which is an independent expert advisory committee. Ministers will consider advice from JCVI when it is forthcoming.
Mr. Harper: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the current ratio is of (a) NHS dentists, (b) private dentists and (c) all dentists to people in England; and what it was in each year since 1997. 
Ms Rosie Winterton [holding answer 23 April 2007]: The numbers of national health service dentists per population in England are included in reports published by the Information Centre for health and social care. Most dentists eligible to provide NHS services also choose to provide some private treatment. Information is not held on the number of dentists who only provide private treatment.
Numbers of NHS dentists per population in England as at 31 March 1997 to 2006 are contained in Annex F of the NHS Dental Activity and Workforce Report England: 31 March 2006. This information is based on the old contractual arrangements. This is available on-line at
Numbers of NHS dentists per population in England as at 30 June, 30 September and 31 December 2006 are contained in Annex 3 of the NHS Dental Statistics for England Q3: 31 December 2006 report. This information is based on the new contractual arrangements and is not directly comparable with earlier information. This is available on-line at
The latest information available is as at 31 December 2006. Numbers of dentists at this date and at 30 June and 30 September 2006 are contained in Section G of Annex 3 of the National Health Service Dental Statistics for England Q3:31 December 2006 report.
Ms Rosie Winterton: The dental reforms launched in April 2006 give local primary care trusts (PCTs) for the first time the responsibility for commissioning dental services to meet the needs of their local populations. Under the previous system, dentists could set up practice where they wished and choose how much or how little national health service work to provide. If a dentist stopped providing NHS services, the local NHS could do very little to secure replacement services. Under the reforms, PCTs have the resources to commission agreed levels of patient services from local dentists. If a dentist stops providing NHS services in the area, the money for that service now stays with the PCT and is used to commission services from other dentists. PCTs are increasingly using these new powers to commission additional services which better reflect local needs.
The reforms build on a programme of significant Government investment in NHS dental services and workforce expansion. The annual resources now allocated for NHS dentistry are some £400 million more than in 2003-04 (excluding the money for annual pay increases). In the two years leading up to the reforms, the Government co-ordinated a major recruitment programme, which resulted in the equivalent of over 1,450 whole time dentists joining the workforce. There are currently some 20,900 dentists on NHS contracts, around 1,500 more than two years ago and 4,000 more than in 1997. To support future
growth, the Government also increased annual numbers of dental training places by 25 per cent. in 2005.
Ms Rosie Winterton: Primary care trusts (PCTs) assumed responsibility for local commissioning of primary care dentistry from 1 April 2006. The following table sets out the resources allocated to the national health service for commissioning dental services in 2006-07, including resources distributed via strategic health authorities to support dental vocational training. Total (gross) expenditure on NHS primary dental services also includes income raised from patient charges. The table includes the indicative assumptions made before the start of the year about gross budgets and patient charge income. A number of factors will affect the actual levels of gross expenditure and patient charge income, including the levels of dentistry commissioned by PCTs, the time needed for new dental services to be commissioned and come into operation, and changes in the mix of charge-paying and charge exempt patients treated.
|Primary dental service resource allocation, England, 2006-07|
PCTs did not receive full primary care dental allocations prior to 2006-07. The bulk of primary dental care was provided through the centrally funded general dental services (GDS). Under GDS, spending was largely demand-led, with dentists determining how much NHS work they carried out and claiming separate fees for each individual item of treatment. The following table sets out overall (gross) expenditure on NHS primary dental care in the four years from 2002-03 to 2005-06.
|Gross expenditure on primary dental care (general dental services and personal dental service pilots), England|
|Financial year||£ million|
Ms Rosie Winterton [holding answer 23 April 2007]: In 2006-07, the Department invested £12 million in the integrated drug treatment system (IDTS). This has paid for 45 prisons to implement the clinical element of IDTS. £7.8 million of this funding was allocated directly to these prisons.
In addition to this, the Home Office invested £5 million in 2006-07 for the psycho-social element of IDTS. This has been implemented in 17 of the 45 prisons. Of this sum, £3.5 million was allocated directly to these prisons. The amount of this investment for 2007-08 will increase to £6 million.
The amounts allocated directly to each prison are shown in the table. The remainder of this investment has been invested in the small building conversions and alternations necessary in these prisons to accommodate IDTS facilities, as well as in central programme costs, which include training, research and evaluation, clinical support and regional management support.
|New PCT||New SHA||Prison||2006-07 a llocation||2007-08 a llocation||2007-08 a llocation (rounded up)|
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