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29 Feb 2008 : Column 1980W—continued

Gordon Banks: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will hold discussions with his American
29 Feb 2008 : Column 1981W
counterparts on the implementation of real time information technology systems for the administration and co-ordination of organ donations. [189217]

Ann Keen: NHS Blood and Transplant has commissioned work to develop and design an electronic system for offering donor organs throughout the United Kingdom. It is hoped that a pilot phase will be introduced by September 2008.

Gordon Banks: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the average working hours of donor transplant co-ordinators in the most recent period for which figures are available; what assessment he has made of the stress on co-ordinators from their working hours; and if he will take steps to reduce that stress. [189219]

Ann Keen: The Government have accepted recommendations made by the Organ Donation Taskforce, in their report “Organs for Transplant” including the need to expand and strengthen the current network of donor transplant coordinators. To ensure a comprehensive highly skilled, specialised and robust service, extra coordinators will be recruited, and changes made to their employment, training and working arrangements.

Mr. Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many organ donors were registered in (a) Lancashire and (b) England in each of the last five years. [190589]

Ann Keen: This information is provided in the following tables.

National health service organ donor registrations, 2003 to 2007, residents in Lancashire and England
2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 Total















Deceased organ donors, 2003 to 2007, hospitals in Lancashire and England
2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 Total















(1) Lancashire county, excludes Greater Manchester and Merseyside.
(2) Includes Lancashire.

Peterborough and Stamford Hospitals NHS Foundation Hospitals Trust: Out-Patients

Mr. Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many first outpatient appointments in the Peterborough and Stamford Hospitals NHS Foundation Hospitals Trust were missed in each year since 2001; and if he will make a statement. [187698]

Mr. Bradshaw: The following table shows the combined number of first consultant led out-patient appointments kept and not attended for all specialties at the Peterborough and Stamford Hospitals National Health Service Foundation Trust from 2001-02 to 2006-07.

Missed appointments are one area in which the public can make a significant impact simply through making responsible use of health services. It is the Department’s policy to help them achieve this through
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the improvement of appointment procedures and ensuring that patients have the opportunity to make an informed choice of where and when they receive their care. The new choose and book system, introduced in 2004, will help to give patients greater certainty and choice over the time and date of their hospital appointment. There is good evidence from the national programme that booking systems, whether electronic or manual, can play a significant role in helping to minimise the number of patients who fail to turn up for their treatment.

Out-patient appointments, consultant-led, all specialties Peterborough and Stamford Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 2001-02 to 2006-07
First attendances seen First attendances did not attend



















The latest published data are for quarter ended September 2007, therefore the latest complete year is 2006-07.
Department of Health form QMOP/QM08/QAR


Dr. Pugh: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many NHS polyclinics there are in England; and where each is situated. [188208]

Mr. Bradshaw: The Department does not collect information about services commissioned locally by primary care trusts (PCTs). However, following the announcement made by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State on 10 October to invest new resources into primary care, every PCT in the country will be procuring a new general practitioner led health centre during 2008-09.

Visits Abroad

David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much his Department spent on overnight accommodation for Ministers overseas in the last year. [171332]

Mr. Bradshaw: We do not have a central record of the costs of overnight accommodation for all Ministers overseas in the last year. To collect the information required would incur disproportionate costs.

Details of the cost of overseas travel for Cabinet Ministers, including the cost of travel and accommodation are contained in the “Overseas Travel by Cabinet Ministers” list. The latest list for the period 1 April 2006 to 31 March 2007 was published on 25 July 2007. Details for the 2007-08 financial year will be published as soon as possible after the end of the financial year.

All travel is made in accordance with the ministerial code.

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Domestic Violence: Children

Margaret Moran: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice when he will publish the Practice Direction on guidance on domestic violence and child contact. [189907]

Bridget Prentice: Under schedule 2, part 1 (2) of the Constitutional Reform Act 2005, the Lord Chief Justice, or a judicial office holder nominated by the Lord Chief Justice with the agreement of the Lord Chancellor, may make or give designated directions. In the case of family proceedings, the nominated judicial office holder is the President of the Family Division. We are working with the President and other agencies in the development of the Practice Direction. As soon as the Direction is finalised, it will be published.

Electronic Government

Margaret Moran: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what the Government's strategy is on e-democracy and e-participation. [189909]

Mr. Wills: The Government continue to explore and promote the best uses of online technologies in support of public engagement in democratic processes. The strategy for local e-participation is being delivered via the “Connect to your council” take up campaign. The Community Empowerment Action Plan commits the Government to develop on-line tools to support empowerment and democracy and DCLG is working in partnership across Government to establish the best means for delivery locally according to what local areas want and need.

In the Governance of Britain Green Paper the Government set out a long-term aim to investigate the potential benefits of remote electronic voting and to take advantage of emerging communication technologies to provide increased flexibility and choice in the way people vote. In the immediate term we are reviewing the lessons learnt from previous e-voting pilots. This will help to inform our programme of work for electronic voting.

Electronic Government: Departmental Coordination

Margaret Moran: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what cross-departmental e-democracy projects his Department has initiated; and if he will make a statement. [189899]

Mr. Wills: My Department initiated the Digital Dialogues project that works with other Government Departments in exploring the use of online technologies to promote dialogue between Government and the public. The project is in its third stage. Following each stage, an evaluation report is produced that analysed the case studies and provides supporting guidance on how best Government can use these methods. More information is available at We are expecting the evaluation of the third stage to be published in the summer.

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Electronic Government: Finance

Margaret Moran: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what e-democracy projects his Department (a) has funded and (b) plans to fund; and what the (i) outcome and (ii) cost of each completed project was. [189897]

Mr. Wills: The Department has funded e-participation projects on Government to citizen engagement, citizen video blogging, online citizen juries, web mapping tools on broken civic infrastructure, representative blogging, use of mass media participation tools and applications for young people to engage in political issues. The Department has also funded five local authorities in piloting e-voting (including remote voting) at their local elections in May 2007. A breakdown of the individual projects and associated costs is detailed in the following table.

The outcomes from the e-participation projects have included the active engagement of numbers of people in democratic processes, case studies, guidance material, web resources and tools. Each of the e-voting pilots supported successful elections and provided valuable lessons in relation to the use of the technology.

We will be reviewing the outcomes and lessons learnt from these projects to inform our future plans for e-participation and e-voting.

e-participation projects
Project Costs 2006-07 Costs 2007-08


35,030 (inclusive of VAT)

148,750 (inclusive of VAT)

Heads Up

15,000 (plus VAT)


Bristol City Council—vlogging

14,500 (plus VAT)


The Young Foundation—“Fix-My-Street” web mapping tool

10,100 (plus VAT)


South Kesteven District Council—Online Citizen’s Jury

10,100 (plus VAT)


UK Citizens Online Democracy—Fax your MP

10,100 (plus VAT)


Gallomanor Communications Ltd.—Councillor 2.0





15,000 (plus VAT)

Milo Creative Ltd. “mPower”


15,000 (plus VAT)



15,000 (plus VAT)

Digital Dialogues



e-voting projects at the 2007 local elections in May 2007
Project Cost (£)







South Bucks




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Margaret Moran: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what funding allocation has been made to e-democracy projects in each of the next three years; and how much of the allocated budget for each year has not been assigned to a specific project. [189898]

Mr. Wills: Detailed allocations have yet to be made for e-democracy and e-participation projects in the next three years.

Marriage: Islam

Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what arrangements are in place for marriages in mosques to be performed in conjunction with the civil marriage law arrangements; what consideration has been given to requiring marriage registrars to attend the mosque to perform the civil marriage arrangements at the time of the religious ceremony; whether consideration has been given to placing mosque marriages on the same basis as church marriages; and if he will make a statement. [189621]

Bridget Prentice: The Marriage Act 1949 provides for mosques to be registered for the solemnisation of marriages according to the rites of the Muslim religion. The marriage should be solemnised in the registered mosque, in the presence of two or more witnesses, and in the presence of either a registrar of the registration district in which the building is registered, or a person who has been authorised to perform such ceremonies in that registered building. Such marriages are recognised in law without the need for a separate civil ceremony. Where a mosque has not been registered, a separate civil ceremony is necessary.

These same requirements apply to various other religious marriages, including Roman Catholic, Greek Orthodox, Hindu and Sikh. 785 buildings are recorded by the Registrar General (as at 26 February 2008) as certified places of meeting for religious worship by those professing the Muslim religion in England and Wales. Of those, 152 buildings are also registered for marriage, and of the 152, 36 buildings have authorised persons appointed to attend and register marriages.

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