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It is for strategic health authorities, as the local headquarters of the NHS, and primary care trusts (PCTs), as commissioners, to ensure that emergency ambulance services, including national response time standards are delivered and maintained by ambulance trusts. The hon. Member may wish to raise this issue directly with the chief executives of South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Trust and East Sussex Downs and Weald PCT.
Jim Dobbin: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many and what proportion of babies born with a tranquilliser addiction have a permanent impairment as a consequence of their addiction; 
Dawn Primarolo [holding answer 3 March 2008]: Information is not collected centrally about the number of patients with a prescription drug addiction, nor is information available either about the number of individuals with a permanent impairment as a consequence of their addiction.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the answer of 14 June 2007, Official Report, column 1298W, on blood transfusions, what estimate his Department has made of the cost of implementation of prion filtration technology. 
Dawn Primarolo: Our current estimate, based on information supplied by manufacturers and NHS blood and transplant, is that the cost per annum of introducing prion filtration for all United Kingdom blood donations is approximately £200,000,000.
Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Health with reference to the answer to the hon. Member for Kettering (Mr. Hollobone), of 14 June 2007, Official Report, column 1298W, on blood transfusions, when his Department expects to receive the results of the independent evaluation of the efficacy of the prion filter in reducing variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease infectivity in blood; and if he will make a statement. 
Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Health with reference to the answer to the hon. Member for Kettering (Mr. Hollobone), of 14 June 2007, Official Report, column 1298W, on blood transfusions, on what evidential basis his Department will reach estimates of the prevalence of preclinical variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease or a carrier state in the donor population, and consequent estimates of infections prevented through filtration and the benefit of life years saved; when it expects to receive such evidence; and if he will make a statement. 
Dawn Primarolo: The Department currently uses a variant Creutzfeldt Jakob disease (vCJD) sub-clinical prevalence estimate based on one study of tonsil and appendix samples which identified three affected samples out of 12,674 tested. This suggests a prevalence of about 1 in 4,000, though with very wide ranges of uncertainty and a statistical confidence interval of between 1 in 1,400 and 1 in 20,000.
The Department supports other studies to estimate prevalence and the Health Protection Agency is collecting 100,000 pairs of tonsils for vCJD testing. To date over 45,000 pairs of tonsils have been tested, none of which was positive.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the answer of 14 June 2007, Official Report, column 1298W, on blood transfusions, if he will make it his policy that the precautionary principle in relation to blood transfusions take priority in decisions to implement prion filtration technology. 
Dawn Primarolo: All decisions on the implementation of risk reduction measures will be based on impact assessments which will consider among other matters, evidence of efficacy, cost-effectiveness and the precautionary principle.
Lynne Featherstone: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many legal cases where the plaintiff has been allegedly infected following a blood infusion have been brought against the NHS in each of the last five years for which information is available; in how many of those cases in each year the NHS made a payment in settlement; and how much was paid in settlements in each year. 
|Date of claim||Number of claims( 1)||Number of settlements||Settlement total(£)|
|(1) This is a provisional settlement. Hepatitis C claims are excluded as they are handled by the NHS Litigation Authority|
The NHS Litigation Authority (NHSLA) has received a number of clinical negligence claims against the National Blood Service where the claimant has contracted an infectious disease from a blood transfusion. Information is provided in the following table, which includes settled and open claims:
|NHSLA notification year||Number of claims||Damages paid|
|(1) Figures as at 31 January 2008|
As National Statistician, I have been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question asking how many diagnoses of breast cancer there have been nationally in each year since 2001. 
The latest available figures for newly diagnosed cases (incidence) of malignant neoplasm of breast are for the year 2005. Figures for 2001-05 for England are given in the table below.
|Registrations of newly diagnosed cases of breast cancer( 1) by sex, England, 2001-05|
|(1 )Breast cancer is coded to C50 in the International Classification of Diseases Tenth Revision (ICD-10)|
Office for National Statistics
|Cancer network||Lead managers|
Ann Keen: The model was recommended by experts during the development of the Cancer Reform Strategy as a potential mechanism for delivering high quality, male friendly advice and support on prostate health issues.
Mark Simmonds: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether he expects the Governments forthcoming cardiovascular screening programme, announced by the Prime Minister on 7 January 2008, to have an impact on (a) existing and (b) future Better Care, Better Value indicators. 
Ann Keen: The Prime Minister announced on 7 January that proposals were under development for a vascular risk assessment programme. A departmental project is currently under way to assess the costs and benefits of an integrated, systematic population-wide vascular risk screening programme. The Department will complete this as soon as possible, but it is too early to predict what impact, if any, this work may have on future Better Care, Better Value indicators.
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