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National health service organisations have always been responsible for paying for and maintaining their existing information systems, and funding for this is built into general allocations. Information technology expenditure reported by the NHS in the 2005-06 financial year amounted to £1.329 billion, and in 2006-07 to £1.381 billion.
Mr. Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what (a) linkages and (b) cross checks are planned between data records on individuals in (i) NHS IT systems and (ii) other Government IT systems. 
Mr. Bradshaw: In accordance with the national health service care record guarantee and legal obligations of confidentiality, links will be made only with the consent of patients or where there is a statutory obligation. A recent example of the latter is the Children Act 2004 which provides for the mandatory disclosure of some NHS patient information to the Department of Children, Schools and Family's ContactPoint system.
The strategy that underpins the national programme for information technology also envisaged that there would be appropriate integration of care records with social care where necessary for the care of patients. Until now, this has concentrated on close working to achieve a single assessment process between the NHS and social care with cross checks to agree the accuracy. Future linkages will be subject to feasibility work and agreements.
Other linkages exist for the purposes of care with the Ministry of Defence for the treatment of armed forces personnel and with the Ministry of Justice for the provision of health care for prisoners. In both cases, there are no plans to link NHS patient records, or perform cross-checks, with records in other Government information technology systems for non-care purposes.
Mr. Ellwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what his policy is on the making of contributions to Wikipedia pages related to the NHS by (a) administrative, (b) medical, (c) nursing and (d) other NHS staff; what guidance he has issued to health authorities and trusts on the allocation of resources to this work; what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse in each of the last three years of time spent by NHS staff in contributing to Wikipedia online pages; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Bradshaw: The only policies covering the creation or editing of information in the public domain applicable to departmental or national health service staff relate to acceptable use of resources and the code of conduct for staff. These policies apply to all grades, roles and professions and there has been no specific guidance issued relating to Wikipedia.
Organisations within the NHS operate their own local information technology systems but connect to the world wide web in the main via the centrally managed N3 communications network. The internal IP address is changed on the route out. This means that external web sites and the Wikipedia site would see one of a range of centralised gateway addresses rather than a specific individual internal personal computer IP address. Wikipedia has adopted the policy since August 2007 that no contribution is accepted from a source that cannot be attributed to an individual.
The reporting tool within Wikipedia shows only one document that has been edited using an IP address originating from the N3 network in the reporting period available. The cost to the public purse based on this information cannot be accurately quantified but is estimated to be less than £100.
Mr. Bradshaw: Information on where project companies delivering services to national health service trusts under private finance initiative contracts are registered for tax purposes is not held centrally and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.
Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the comparative cost of outsourced (a) diagnostics and (b) operations in comparison to undertaking such procedures in-house in NHS trusts in 2006-07; and if he will make a statement. 
However, the 2006-07 NHS reference costs schedules, published in February 2008, contain information on the average cost of services delivered by NHS hospitals. The reference cost schedules also contain data relating to the average price to NHS organisations of a range of commissioned or contracted-out procedures undertaken by non-NHS providers. This information is available in the Library and is also available on the Departments website at:
Information on the proportion of adults aged over 16 years in England that are obese, broken down by Government Office Region and strategic health authority is collected in the Health Survey for England.
This information can be found in Health Survey for England 2006: Volume 1 Cardiovascular disease and risk factors in adults Tables 5.2 and 5.3 on pages 98 and 99 which was published on 31January 2008. This publication is available in the Library.
Estimated prevalence of obesity among adults aged 16 and over, along with associated confidence intervals for Sunderland local authority are presented in Table one. These estimates are taken from Model-Based Estimates of Healthy Lifestyle Behaviours, and are for combined years 2003-05. The proportion of people who are obese in Sunderland was found to be statistically significantly higher than the national estimate.
|Model-Based estimates of obesity prevalence, Sunderland local authority 2003-05|
The national estimate is derived directly from the Health Surveys for England 2003-05 (with associated confidence intervals) and therefore is not a model-based estimate.
Source: Model-Based Estimates of Healthy Lifestyles Behaviours, 2003-05.
Neighbourhood Statistics, Office for National Statistics (ONS)
Dawn Primarolo: Data on the prevalence of obesity among children aged two to 10, 11 to 15 and two to 15, for the last five years up to 2006 can be found in the Health Survey for England (HSE) 2006 latest trends, published 31 January 2008. The HSE publication is available in the Library.
Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the answer of 18 March 2008, Official Report, column 1055W, on obesity, what baseline figure has been set for his Department's public service agreement target to improve the health and wellbeing of children and young people. 
Dawn Primarolo: As part of the public service agreement (PSA) for child health and well-being, the Government aim to reduce the rate of increase in obesity in children under 11-years-old over the period 2008-09 to 2010-11. Health Survey for England data from 1995 to 2006 have been used to calculate a linear trend for obesity in children under 11. This linear trend suggests that childhood obesity is growing at 0.5 per cent. points per year and this growth rate has been used to forecast a baseline trajectory over the period, with child obesity increasing from 16.1 per cent. in 2006 (latest year of actual data) to 18.7 per cent. in 2011. Under the PSA the Government aim to reduce the rate of growth against this baseline trajectory.
Kelvin Hopkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment the Government has made of the merits of osteopathy in treating long-term musculoskeletal conditions; and if he will make a statement. 
Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps he plans to take in response to the second report of the National Confidential Inquiry into Patient Outcome and Death: Trauma, Who Cares?; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Bradshaw: The Secretary of State does not define what constitutes exceptional in relation to the funding of treatment. If a primary care trust (PCT) has a general policy of not funding a particular treatment, it is for the PCT to determine whether there are exceptional circumstances that justify treatment in any individual case. What constitutes exceptional circumstances depends on the treatment in question and is to be determined on a case-by-case basis.
Dr. Naysmith: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will bring forward legislative proposals to require pharmaceutical companies to disclose the evidence from all their clinical trials. 
Dawn Primarolo: The conduct of clinical trials in the European Union (EU) is governed by EU law, implemented in the United Kingdom by means of regulations. These represent a comprehensive framework for the conduct of clinical trials, including requirements on reporting. However, following an investigation by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency into allegations that GlaxoSmithKline withheld relevant information gathered in clinical trials on the use of Seroxat in children and adolescents, some weaknesses in the law as it stood at the time of the alleged offences were identified. The Government have made a commitment to clarify and strengthen both EU and UK law in this area. We will seek to strengthen EU legislation on the obligations on pharmaceutical companies to report any information impacting on the risk and benefits of licensed medicines, including the results of clinical trials. In the meantime we will clarify the current law as it applies in the UK. Consultation on changes to UK law will take place in the summer.
Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the total reduction was in fees payable to pharmacies by primary care trusts as a result of the reduction in practice payment fees in the period from October 2007 to January 2008. 
Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many and what percentage of (a) dispensing and (b) non-dispensing GPs were using the Electronic Prescriptions Service system in each month since its inception; and how many and what proportion of prescriptions were issued in each month since the inception of the Electronic Prescriptions Service by (i) dispensing and (ii) non-dispensing general practitioners. 
The month-by-month split between dispensing and non-dispensing general practitioners (GPs) using the electronic prescription service (EPS) is
not recorded. At present, it is not possible to differentiate between individual dispensing, and non-dispensing practice generated electronic prescription messages, and individual dispensing and non-dispensing GP prescribing behaviours.
|Total number of EPS prescription messages generated by GPs||Total number of EPS dispense notification messages sent by pharmacy|
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