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4 Mar 2008 : Column 2391W—continued

The NCI is delivering a major programme of work to support those involved in local involvement networks, specifically local authorities as well as voluntary and community sector partners. The NCI is also responsible more generally for working with
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national health service staff and organisations to look at how they involve patients and the public in improving health services.

Nurses: Schools

Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many qualified and practising school nurses there were in England in each year since 1997-98. [188152]

Ann Keen: The annual national health service workforce census collected accurate information on the number of school nurses employed by the NHS in England for the first time in 2004. The number of school nurses from 2004 to 2006 is shown in the following table.

The 2006 census showed there were 2,968 qualified nurses in the school nursing area of work, an increase of 559 or 23.2 per cent. since 2004. Of these there were 1,129 school nurses with a post registration school nurse qualification. This is an increase of 273 or 31.89 per cent. since 2004.

School nurse numbers
2004 2005 2006( 1) Increase 2004-06 Percentage increase since 2004


School nursing service nurses






of which:

Nurses with a post registration school nursing qualification







School nursing service nurses






of which:

Nurses with a post registration school nursing qualification






(1) More accurate validation processes in 2006 have resulted in the identification and removal of 9,858 duplicate non-medical staff records out of the total workforce figure of 1.3 million in 2006. Earlier years’ figures could not be accurately validated in this way and so will be slightly inflated. The level of inflation in earlier years’ figures is estimated to be less than one per cent. of total across all non-medical staff groups for headcount figures (and negligible for full-time equivalents). This should be taken into consideration when analysing trends over time.
The Information Centre for health and social care, Non-Medical Workforce Census, general and personal medical services statistics.

Organs: Donors

Gordon Banks: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what EU member states he has assessed for benchmarks for the performance of organ donation; and if he will make a statement. [189209]

Ann Keen: The report of the Organ Donation Taskforce, ‘Organs for Transplant’ includes data from Spain, France, Italy, Holland, Hungary, Germany, Sweden, Poland, Slovakia, Denmark, and Greece. In addition, the Taskforce met the chair of an Australian
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Organ Donation Taskforce, and considered data from the United States, Latvia, Finland, Croatia, Norway and Switzerland.

Given the experience of other countries and in particular that lessons from the Spanish system have been successfully implemented in Italy and several South America countries, the Taskforce believe that implementation of their recommendations will achieve a 50 per cent. increase in organ donation after death in the United Kingdom within five years.

Palliative Care: Children

Mr. Swire: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much his Department proposes to allocate to primary care trusts for (a) children’s palliative care and (b) disabled children’s services under the Comprehensive Spending Review for 2008-09; and what guidance has been issued on the allocation of such funding. [185663]

Mr. Ivan Lewis [holding 18 February 2008]: Allocations to primary care trusts (PCTs) for 2008-09 have already been announced. General allocations are not broken down into funding for individual services, and it is for PCTs to decide how best to resource the priorities set out in the national health service operating framework for 2008-09 and other national strategies.

In section two of the operating framework under ‘Priorities’ it states

On 19 February 2008, we launched a first ever national strategy for children’s palliative care “Better Care: Better Lives”. The strategy will assist local commissioners, providers and regulators in devising local strategies to enable every child and young person with a life-limiting or life-threatening condition access to high-quality, family centred, sustainable care and support with services provided in a setting of choice according to the child’s and family’s wishes. It sets out clear expectations for improving choice, access and continuity of care, and seeks to place palliative care at the centre of local children’s service provision.

We also announced an additional £20 million in funding to enable the Children’s Hospices and Hospice at Home grant to continue in 2009-10 and 2010-11 with £10 million available in each year.

Palliative Care: Greater London

Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what data are used by commissioners of health care to determine the need for specialist palliative and neurological care in Leyton and Wanstead. [190618]

Mr. Ivan Lewis: It is for individual primary care trusts (PCTs), including Redbridge and Waltham Forest PCTs, within the national health service to commission services for their resident population, including end of life care and neurological care, based on an assessment of local
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needs and priorities. Strategic health authorities are responsible for monitoring PCTs to ensure they are effective and efficient.

The NHS operating framework for 2007-08 asked PCTs, working with local authorities, to undertake a baseline review of their end of life care services. These will allow local commissioners to assess current services, identify gaps and obtain a much clearer view of local need, which will inform local commissioning.

Regarding neurological care, the information strategy published alongside the “National Service Framework for Long-term (Neurological) Conditions” outlines commissioners’ information requirements and a series of local and national actions designed to meet those needs.

Paramedical Staff: Crimes of Violence

Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many members of ambulance teams were assaulted while on duty in each of the last five years. [188839]

Ann Keen: In April 2003 the National Health Service Security Management Service (NHS SMS) was created and assumed responsibility for tackling violence against NHS staff. The NHS SMS has collected data on the number of physical assaults against NHS ambulance staff in England since 2004-05.

The number of physical assaults against ambulance staff reported in the period 2004-05 to 2006-07 is shown in the following table.

Number of reported physical assaults against ambulance staff







Primary Care Trusts: Agency Nurses

Anne Main: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many agency (a) nurses, (b) medical staff and (c) midwives were employed in each of the last three years, broken down by primary care trust (PCT); and how much each PCT spent (i) in each year and (ii) per agency worker in each category in each such year. [190442]

Ann Keen: We do not collect data on the number of agency staff. However data is collected on the cost of agency staff.

Tables have been placed in the Library which show the spend in each primary care trust (PCT) and national health service trust. The data is taken from the NHS trust and PCT financial returns for 2004-05—2006-07. The tables contain spend on non-NHS medical staff; non-NHS nursing midwifery and health visiting staff and the total non-NHS staff spend.

Due to the PCT reorganisation in 2006, data is presented for the old PCT structure for 2004-05 and 2005-06, and the new PCT structure for 2006-07.

Foundation trusts (FTs) do not submit financial returns and therefore are not included, except when they obtained FT status part way through the financial year, in which case data are submitted for the portion of the year before they obtained FT status.

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As we do not have data on the number of agency staff, it is not possible to calculate the cost per head of staff.

Prostate Cancer: Screening

David Tredinnick: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent comparative assessment he has made of levels of prostate cancer screening in (a) England, (b) other parts of the UK and (c) other EU member states; and if he will make a statement. [185548]

Ann Keen [holding answer 7 February 2008]: Currently there is no reliable method for screening for prostate cancer, therefore we have made no assessment of the levels of prostate cancer screening in England, the United Kingdom or other European Union countries.

Psychiatry: North East

Mr. Kemp: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many psychiatric beds there were in each NHS
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mental health trust in the North East in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement; [184979]

(2) what the rate of occupancy of psychiatric beds in each NHS mental health trust in the North East was in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement. [184980]

Mr. Ivan Lewis: The following table shows the number of psychiatric beds and their occupancy levels in each mental health trust in the North East for the years 2002-07.

The reduction in mental health bed numbers reflects the increasing provision by the national health service in England of treatment for patients with mental health conditions in primary care and community settings, without the need for hospital admissions.

The figures do not include the number of mental illness beds contracted to the national health service by the independent sector as this information is not centrally available.

Number of psychiatric beds in each mental health trust in the North East 2002-07
2002-03 2003-04 2004-05 2005-06
Code Name Mental illness Learning disability Mental illness Learning disability Mental illness Learning disability Mental illness Learning disability


Newcastle, North Tyneside and Northumberland Mental Health NHS Trust










Northgate and Prudhoe NHS Trust










South of Tyne and Wearside Mental Health NHS Trust










South Tyneside PCT










County Durham and Darlington Priority Services NHS Trust










Tees and North East Yorkshire NHS Trust









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