A European Union Commission analysis of organ donation and transplantation across EU member states has revealed large differences in organ donor rates and transplant activity. On 31 May 2007 the EU Commission adopted a communication on
organ donation and transplantation proposing two mechanisms. Firstly an action plan to encourage closer cooperation between member states sharing expertise to maximise organ donation and to optimise equity of access to transplantation. The Commission would also monitor organ trafficking and consider any necessary additional action. Secondly, it would put in place a legal framework that would establish the basic level of quality and safety for transplantation at community level.
Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what criteria are used by the Healthcare Commission for assessing adherence to core standards on food and nutritional care, as described on page 18 of his Departments document, Improving Nutritional Care; and in what ways these criteria are new. 
Ann Keen: Core standard C15 focuses on the provision of food in relation to choice, safety, balanced diet, nutrition, dietary requirements and access. As part of their self-declaration process the Healthcare Commission have published the following criteria for assessment of C15:
1. Patients are offered a choice of food in line with the requirements of a balanced diet, reflecting the needs and preferences and rights (including faith and cultural needs) of its service user population(1)
2. The preparation, distribution, handling and serving of food is carried out in accordance with food safety legislation and national guidance (including the Food Safety Act 1990, the Food Safety (General Food Hygiene) Regulations 1995 and EC regulation 852/2004.
1. Patients have access to food and drink 24 hours a day(1)
2. The nutritional, personal and clinical dietary requirements of individual patients are assessed and met, including the right to have religious dietary requirements met(1)
3. Patients requiring assistance with eating and drinking are provided with appropriate support(1)
(1) Adequate levels of assurance can be provided by an outcome of excellent for food for each relevant site from Patient Environment Action Teams assessments for 2008.
Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what funding the Government will make available to the Pharmacy Regulation and Leadership Oversight Group in each of the next three financial years. 
At the British Pharmaceutical Conference in September 2007, my hon. Friend the Minister of State, (Mr. Bradshaw), announced £3 million towards establishing the General Pharmaceutical Council (GPhC). This will be allocated in two amounts across
two financial years: £1.5 million in 2008-09 and £1.5 million in 2009-10. At present, there is no allocation for the financial year 2010-11. As part of its work, the Pharmacy Regulation and Leadership Oversight Group will advise Ministers on the financial considerations of establishing the GPhC.
Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how data are shared between pharmacists and the Prescription Pricing Division of the NHS Business Services Authority; and what medium is used to transmit the data; 
PPD also receive prescription messages under Release 1 of the electronic prescription service (EPS) but no PPD processing takes place for reimbursement and remuneration purposes. Approximately 1.1 million messages have been received since August 2007, which are held for approximately 60 days then deleted. The service protects the confidentiality of the data received.
The data received through the EPS are encrypted under transport layer security termination and conform to the national health service cryptographic standards. The data are unencrypted at PPD and are processed through a secure batch processing system.
Anne Milton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many mothers have been diagnosed with post-natal depression in each year since 1997 (a) one week, (b) one month and (c) one year after giving birth; and how many mother and baby beds are available in mental health units. 
Ann Keen: Information about the number of mothers who were diagnosed with postnatal depression, within any given time period following birth, is not collected centrally. Accurate data are not available about overall mother and baby bed numbers.
Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what his Department's policy is on the addition of animal or vegetable proteins or other high nitrogen materials into chicken breasts; what assessment he has made of the effect of this practice on the accurate measurement of the amount of added water in the product; and if he will make a statement; 
(2) what assistance the Food Standards Agency has (a) requested and (b) received from (i) the European Commission and (ii) the Dutch Government in relation to the use of added animal proteins in chicken breasts in the last five years. 
Dawn Primarolo: The production and labelling of meat products are regulated in law. European legislation places no limit on the addition of proteins of animal or vegetable origin. If proteins are added to chicken breast products they must be correctly described on the label so as not to mislead consumers.
Added water is calculated using methodology agreed at European level. The method was developed to take account of the addition of hydrolysed collagen protein and works well for the type of product that it was developed for. The need for further methodological development is kept under consideration.
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has urged the European Commission to take action on the use of hydrolysed proteins from different animal species in poultry products, including in chicken breast products. The European Commission responded with a number of actions, including:
a review of legal requirements, emphasising to member states that the practice of adding proteins to poultry products is legal, but that without proper labelling it would be fraudulent. The conclusion was that the legislation was adequate;
a European Food and Veterinary Office mission to assess poultry meat production including the use of water retention agents such as proteins. This mission covered both the United Kingdom and the Netherlands;
the inclusion of an assessment of the use of water retention agents in a European Coordinated Programme for the Official Control of Food Stuffs.
In relation to assistance from the Government of the Netherlands, adverse sampling and testing results on imported frozen chicken breasts with added water and protein from the Netherlands have been forwarded by the FSA during 2007 to the Dutch enforcement authorities. The Dutch authorities have taken action against the relevant company.
Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the (a) pre-market launch and (b) post-market launch medicines are on which the National Prescribing Centre provides evaluated information; and which condition each treats. 
Dawn Primarolo: The National Prescribing Centre publishes two newsletters on its website to assist the national health service in managing the introduction of new medicines. On the HorizonFuture Medicines contains information on selected medicines prior to launch, and On the HorizonPost-Launch Update provides information on selected medicines after they have been launched in the United Kingdom.
|Pre-market launch medicines
National Prescribing Centre: On the HorizonFuture Medicines
|Post-market launch medicines
National Prescribing Centre: On the HorizonPost-launch Update
Mike Penning: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what (a) estimate he has made of and (b) research he has (i) commissioned and (ii) evaluated on the number of patients who have had adverse reactions to medicines due to (A) prescription and (B) use after the use-by date; and if he will make a statement. 
Dawn Primarolo: The data collected on suspected adverse drug reactions (ADRs) through the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency's (MHRA) Yellow Card Scheme do not record whether the drug suspected to have caused an adverse reaction was received by prescription or if the drug was used after the use-by date.
Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the answer of 3 December 2007, Official Report, column 1013W, on prescriptions, what operational issues were discussed. 
Dawn Primarolo: Since January this year, a representative but not exhaustive list of the operational issues discussed at the monthly departmental meetings with the prescription pricing division of the National Health Service Business Services Authority, have been the performance report, the business plan, the capacity improvement programme, information services and the electronic prescription service.
Dawn Primarolo: The information centre for health and social cares Prescriptions Dispensed in the Community Statistics for 1996 to 2006: England published in July 2007 shows that 88 per cent. of prescription items were dispensed in the community in England with no charge paid at the point of dispensing.
Dawn Primarolo: Data are collected on the number of items dispensed and, when free of charge, the reason for the exemption. It is not possible to answer this question because prescription data on individuals are not collected.
Danny Alexander: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment his Department has made of the levels of awareness of the NHS Low Income Scheme among people likely to be entitled to such help. 
Dawn Primarolo: The Prescription Pricing Division of the National Health Service Business Services Authority, which is responsible for publicising the prescription charging arrangements in England including the NHS low income scheme, takes every opportunity to publicise the arrangements. This includes regular mailings to all pharmacies, general practitioner (GP) dispensing practices and all other GP practices.