Previous Section Index Home Page

14 May 2007 : Column 583W—continued

Drugs: Misuse

Sarah Teather: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many people in each London borough were recorded as having an addiction to (a) cocaine, (b) heroin, (c) ecstasy and (d) other illegal drugs in each of the last 10 years. [132921]

Caroline Flint: Drug misusers are not required to register their addiction so we are not able to provide this information.

Fertility

Jim Dobbin: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what public funding is provided annually for the National Gamete Donation Trust. [131834]

Caroline Flint: The National Gamete Donation Trust received £40,900 in 2006-07 and has been awarded a grant of £40,000 for 2007-08 and £40,000 for 2008-09.
14 May 2007 : Column 584W
The grants are provided for the Trust’s administrative costs in providing information about sperm and egg donation and are given under section 64 of the Health Services and Public Health Act 1968.

Food: Advertising

Anne Milton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment her Department has made of the potential effectiveness of the Office of Communications’ advertising ban on junk food based on the Food Standards Agency’s nutrient profiling model; and if she will make a statement. [131986]

Caroline Flint: The Office of Communications’ (Ofcom) has assessed the impact of the new rules restricting television advertising to children for food that is high in fat, salt and sugar. They are expected to reduce children’s exposure to advertising impacts by 41 per cent. for four to 15-year-olds and 51 per cent. for four to nine-year-olds. Ofcom will review the effectiveness and scope of the new restrictions in autumn 2008, one year after the full implementation of the new content rules.

The Department will monitor the impact of new restrictions in both broadcast and non-broadcast media to see whether they deliver the Government’s commitment to changing the nature and balance of food and drink advertising to children. An interim review will be conducted in autumn 2007, and the Department has committed to work with Ofcom and industry partners on a more detailed review in 2008. On that basis, the Government will decide whether further action, such as legislation, is required.

Helen Goodman: To ask the Secretary of State for Health when she expects her Department’s Food and Health Advertising and Promotion Forum to deliver its proposals on all non-broadcast promotion of foods high in fat, sugar and salt to children. [135481]

Caroline Flint: The Committee on Advertising Practice (CAP) recently announced new content restrictions on the promotion of food and drink to children in non-broadcast media. These restrictions will apply from 1 July to food and drink advertising to children under 16, with stricter rules for the content of adverts aimed at pre and primary school children.

The Department, along with members of its Food and Drink Advertising and Promotion Forum, are investigating what voluntary action can be taken in those media that fall outside of the CAP code, packaging, sponsorship, point of sale and new media. Progress in these areas will feed into the Government’s interim review in autumn 2007, which will consider whether the new restrictions in broadcast and non-broadcast media are in practice delivering the Government’s commitment to change the nature and balance of food and drink advertising to children.

The Government will undertake a more detailed review of advertising and promotional trends in 2008.

Food: Health Claims

Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) whether food products making health claims referring to (a) slimming and weight-control,
14 May 2007 : Column 585W
(b) psychology and behaviour and (c) children's development and health (i) were able to be placed on the UK market after 19 January 2007 and (ii) will be able to be placed on the market after 7 July 2007 under EC Regulation 1924/2006 on Nutrition and Health Claims Made on Foods; and if she will make a statement; [134240]

(2) whether food products making health claims based upon (a) generally accepted scientific evidence and (b) newly emerging science were (i) able to be placed on the UK market after 19 January 2007 and (ii) will be able to be placed on the market after 7 July 2007 under EC regulation 1924/2006 on Nutrition and Health Claims Made on Foods; and if she will make a statement. [134241]

Caroline Flint: The Regulation puts in place various transitional periods, and associated conditions, which allow health claims to continue to be made following the application date of 1 July and until the community list of health claims has been adopted. These transitional periods relate to the health claim, rather than the product or the nature of supporting evidence.

The specific transitional period for claims which refer to the role of a nutrient or other substance in growth, development and the normal function of the body allows claims on the market prior to 19 January 2007 to continue to be used until 31 January 2010 (the date of adoption of the community list); claims which refer to psychological and behavioural functions and slimming or weight control on the market prior to 19 January 2007 may continue to be used on the condition that an application for authorisation has been made prior to 19 January 2008. All these claims may remain on the market until a decision is taken whether or not to include them in the community list.

The controls for claims referring to children's development and health were added late in negotiations and as a result specific transitional periods were not included. There is a possibility that a transition period could be included with an amendment on comitology currently being discussed. Both the Council and Commission have indicated that they would support this, if proposed by the European Parliament.

Food: Labelling

Anne Milton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether the average quantity or weight of a serving of a particular food is taken into account when determining the labelling used under the Food Safety Agency's nutrient profiling model. [132763]

Caroline Flint: The Food Standards Agency's nutrient profiling model has been developed solely as a tool for Ofcom to use to redress the imbalance of
14 May 2007 : Column 586W
television advertising to children. It is not used for labelling purposes. It assesses food on a l00g basis rather than portion size.

Health Hazards: Aerials

Mr. Nicholas Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what advice she has received from the Chief Medical Officer on the health effects of mobile telephone masts; and what studies are under way. [135638]

Caroline Flint: The Stewart report in 2000 comprehensively reviewed the scientific literature and concluded that, the balance of evidence to date suggests that exposures below international guidelines do not cause health effects to the general population, www.iegmp.org.uk. This report and a more recent review, “Mobile Phones and Health 2004”, documents of the National Radiological Protection Board, volume 15, No. 5, form the basis of health advice relating to mobile phone technology. This advice is available on the web site of the Health Protection Agency’s Radiation Protection Division (HPA-RPD) at www. hpa.org.uk/radiation. Both these reports, additionally, recommended further research as part of an overall precautionary approach to the use of mobile phone technology pending the availability of more robust scientific research results.

The independently managed mobile telecommunications and health research (MTHR) programme was set up in 2001 in response to the Stewart report recommendations. It is currently supporting a number of studies into the possible health effects of mobile phone technology and these are described on the MTHR website at:

All mobile phones and base stations in this country comply with international guidelines that are based on comprehensive reviews of the scientific literature. Measurements undertaken by both the HPA and by Ofcom, www.ofcom.org.uk have consistently shown that exposures to radio signals from base stations are lower than the international guideline levels.

Health Services: Hertfordshire

Mike Penning: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many finished consultant episodes there were at West Hertfordshire Acute Hospital Trust (a) in each specialty and (b) in total excluding the specialties transferred to Dacorum Primary Care Trust in each year since 2000. [135346]

Andy Burnham: The following tables show the count of finished consultant episodes by speciality breakdown by West Hertfordshire Hospitals National Health Service Trust and Dacorum Primary Care Trust (PCT) a provider for the period 2000-01 to 2005-06 NHS Hospitals England


14 May 2007 : Column 587W

14 May 2007 : Column 588W
West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust
Main specialty 2005-06 2004-05 2003-0 4 2002-03 2001-02 2000-01

Not known

*

16

97

1,243

General surgery

9,697

9,900

9,668

9,195

8,838

9,023

Urology

4,502

4,532

4,658

4,481

4,264

4,180

Trauma and Orthopaedics

7,390

7,246

7,260

7,445

7,432

6,765

Ear Nose and Throat (ENT)

1,236

1,090

1,064

918

1,246

1,229

Ophthalmology

2,074

1,841

1,977

1,173

1,274

1,692

Oral surgery

613

706

800

627

521

962

Restorative dentistry

*

Orthodontics

*

Plastic surgery

8,018

7,712

7,912

7,178

6,679

6,624

Cardiothoracic surgery

541

38

A&E

4,800

3,334

554

394

299

237

Anaesthetics

506

442

*

448

464

467

General Medicine

9,313

8,914

8,633

9,469

9,916

8,547

Gastroenterology

5,872

5,767

5,631

5,205

5,498

5,052

Endocrinology

129

200

282

389

676

1,007

Haematology (clinical)

1,928

2,583

2,884

2,761

2,071

892

Rehabilitation

*

134

Palliative Medicine

331

351

355

400

343

Cardiology

3,691

3,308

2,073

1,416

1,490

1,706

Dermatology

252

551

564

675

850

911

Thoracic medicine

1,714

1,225

1,362

1,305

1,324

1,461

Genitourinary medicine

*

Nephrology

20

46

16

*

*

Medical oncology

292

748

707

505

491

538

Neurology

17

17

*

20

23

35

Rheumatology

816

502

393

172

183

89

Paediatrics

5,430

4,998

5,293

4,973

2,405

Geriatric medicine

7,313

7,501

6,819

5,930

4,751

4,995

Obstetrics for patients using a hospital bed or delivery facilities

8,619

8,794

8,385

7,648

8,057

6,325

Gynaecology

4,379

4,487

4,616

4,699

5,085

5,495

Mental handicap

*

*

*

Radiotherapy

820

4,768

*

4,606

5,138

5,202

Haematology

4,688

181

1,149

Immunopathology

138

112

96

107

73

15

Total

89,579

91,662

87,245

82,118

77,321

78,765

Source:
Hospital Episode Statistics (HES), The Information Centre for health and social care

Next Section Index Home Page