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Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the answer of 12 March 2007, Official Report, column 138W, on NHS: finance, for which different data sets she envisages re-using the templates. 
Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Health with which web browsers Choose and Book is compatible; which other parts of the NHS IT programme use web browsers; and with which browsers each of those parts is compatible. 
Caroline Flint: The choose and book professional application is fully compatible with Microsoft Internet Explorer version 6.0 (IE6). Users are advised to employ IE6, but can also use Internet Explorer version 7.0 (IE7). Instructions on optimum browser configuration for IE7 have been published on the choose and book website.
The choose and book patient application currently supports Microsoft Internet Explorer version 5.0 (IE5) and above. Microsoft Internet Explorer is used by over two thirds of all internet users in the United Kingdom, and for this reason was selected as the browser for which the patient web application was originally devised in order to achieve access to the greatest number of patients in the shortest possible time. While this means that the site is not yet accessible to all internet users, work is in hand to ensure one hundred per cent. accessibility later this year, including to those who access via the Firefox and Safari web browsers.
All the national programmes core applications and services require web browser functionality. Suppliers are delivering solutions which will in due course be accessible via all versions of IE or Firefox. However, in the short term, some current versions of suppliers solutions are limited to IE6.
Mr. Andrew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Health by what means care data from a single patient kept in different locations are to be assembled by clinicians using the new NHS IT system for patient records; and if she will make a statement. 
Caroline Flint [holding answer 23 April 2007]: A key element of the national programme for information technology is delivery of a national summary care record. The first phase of this service will allow a summary of information held on general practitioners systems to be uploaded to a national database to allow other clinicians to view it. Information is loaded onto the database from different systems via a transaction messaging system, which processes and routes data messages. Introduction of the summary care record has now begun at so-called early adopter sites.
In the first instance it is expected that the service will be predominantly of use in unscheduled care settings where knowledge of allergies, medicines and major diagnoses will improve patient care and safeguard patient safety. It is expected that the service will be extended in due course to include information from other care settings. Implementation and the future development of the summary care record will be overseen by an advisory group, including clinical, patient and manager stakeholders, chaired by Professor Martin Marshall, the Departments Deputy Chief Medical Officer.
The systems which will enable clinicians to access and use the care records service are being delivered by the national programmes local service providers (LSPs). Each of the LSPs has a portfolio of products that cover different care settings and specialities. It is the LSPs responsibility to integrate their products with each other, and with the central services such as the summary care record, the personal demographic service that provides a single authoritative source of patient demographic data, and the access control framework, which registers and authenticates users. The purpose of these integration requirements is to underpin the creation of a coherent and consistent national information service.
This is being implemented using the worlds first HL7 V3 enterprise solution (HL7 V3 is an international
health messaging standard). The messages that support the integration of systems flow through the central spine database. The spine is the colloquial name given to the national database of key information about patients health and care. It forms the core of the national health service care records service (NHS CRS). The spine currently deals with well in excess of 40 million messages a month and supports around 350,000 registered users, some 50,000 of whom access the system on a typical day, with a peak of over 20,000 users authenticating to the system in a single hour. This is in marked contrast with the previous situation in the NHS which was characterised by huge diversity and an inability to communicate information between systems.
The NHS CRS will provide an integrated national service for all NHS clinical applications, with consequent improvements in patients safety, care and experience, and the efficiency of the service as a whole. This is being delivered by providing an overarching information strategy that allows the portfolio of systems from the local service providers and the existing systems providers to be integrated into a coherent service. The clear evidence that this approach is proving effective is that 102 systems have been through the compliance programmes, creating a level of systems interoperability that was unimaginable three years ago.
Caroline Flint [holding answer 23 April 2007]: Information from different suppliers is integrated in the new national health service information technology systems by having an agreed set of messages and interaction sequences to permit communication between systems. This set of messages and interaction sequences has been created by the Departments NHS Connecting for Health agency in the form of the Message Implementation Manual (MIM). They are defined using an international standard called HL7 version 3. NHS Connecting for Health has been a lead participant in the development of this standard.
The national application service provider for the NHS care records service (NHS CRS) uses the MIM to create a more detailed specification called the external integration specification. Local service providers use this specification to develop their systems, which are tested for conformity to it in NHS Connecting for Healths national integration centre (NIC). The NIC is staffed by NHS Connecting for Healths technical assurance team and testing teams from each of the suppliers. The assurance team is responsible for ensuring that suppliers products and services can be implemented on both a national and local level.
The NHS CRS will provide an integrated national service for all NHS clinical applications, with consequent improvements in patients safety, care and experience, and the efficiency of the service as a whole. This is being delivered by providing an overarching information strategy that allows the portfolio of systems from the local service providers and the existing systems providers to be integrated into a coherent service. The clear evidence that this approach
is proving effective is that 102 systems have been through the compliance programmes, creating a level of systems interoperability that was unimaginable three years ago.
Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) pursuant to the oral answer to the hon. Member for St. Ives of 24 April 2007, Official Report, column 775, on NHS information technology, what information her Department collects from local trusts on the (a) costs and (b) useage of the Choose and Book system; 
(2) pursuant to the oral answer of 24 April 2007, Official Report, column 775, on NHS information technology, what kinds of information on the Choose and Book system are collected; and from whom. 
Caroline Flint: The Department receives information from primary care trusts via monthly monitoring returns, which provide data relating to the number of converted Choose and Book unique booking reference numbers for first outpatient appointments. Other data on usage is extracted by the department from the Choose and Book system itself. NHS Connecting for Health also collects local information on technology release dates.
Mr. Ivan Lewis: The number of nurses made compulsorily redundant in each London trust in the nine months to December 2006 is in the following table. This is the first time redundancy data has been collected centrally in the last 10 years.
|Compulsory nurse redundancies in London April 2006 to December 2006|
|London trust||Type||Compulsory nurse redundancies at 31 December 2006|
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