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Genito-Urinary Medicine

Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health for what reasons developing Payment by Results in the area of sexual health services was not chosen as a priority, as stated in his Department's document, Options for the Future of Payment by Results 2008-09 to 2010-11 response to consultation, published on 24 January 2008. [201336]

Mr. Bradshaw: The response to the consultation that the Department published on 24 January is a summary of responses, and not a detailed work programme. This is made clear in the document.

The identification of five priority areas (mental health, community services, critical care, urgent and emergency care and long term conditions) for future work by the Payment by Results (PbR) team was based on responses received to the consultation and available development resources. The five areas referred to each received more than 24 responses identifying them as priorities. Sexual health services received only a fraction of this level of support.

However, the Government set a target to offer everyone who needs it an appointment at a genito-urinary medicine clinic within 48 hours by March 2008. In February 2008, 97 per cent. of patients were offered an appointment to be seen, and 84 per cent. were seen within 48 hours. In May 2005, only 45 per cent. were offered an appointment to be seen within 48 hours.

Although sexual health was not highlighted as a national priority for PbR in the recent consultation exercise, this does not preclude local work being undertaken. The consultation encouraged local areas to apply to be development sites to pilot and evaluate local currencies for services outside the scope of the national tariff.

As a result, there are two developments sites looking at sexual health issues. One project, supported by the Department's sexual health team, is working to develop a tariff for HIV outpatients. The other project involves Portsmouth City Teaching Primary Care Trust investigating appropriate funding models for contraception services.

Further information on the work of these particular development sites can be found on the Department's website at:

Health Services: Essex

Mr. Francois: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much has been allocated for public relations in the budgets of each primary care trust in Essex in (a) 2008-09 and (b) 2009-10. [202766]

Mr. Ivan Lewis [holding answer 1 May 2008]: This is matter for local primary care trusts (PCTs). There is no separate allocation made to PCTs for public relations, and information on the budgets for public relations for each of the primary care trusts in Essex is not held centrally.

Revenue allocations are made to PCTs on the basis of the relative needs of their populations. It is for PCTs to determine how best to use the funding allocated to them, and to commission services to meet the healthcare needs of their local populations.

The hon. Member may therefore wish to raise this matter locally.

Health Services: Hearing Impaired

Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how much funding was provided for support services for deaf people in each region in each of the last five years; [202739]

(2) what steps he is taking to improve health services for deaf people. [202741]

Mr. Ivan Lewis: Information on funding provided for support services for deaf people is not held centrally. Funding for audiology and support services for deaf
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people, along with the majority of other services, is provided through the general allocations to national health service trusts and social services departments. It is their responsibility to allocate resources to audiology services based on their knowledge of the needs of their local populations and the resources available.

Primary care trusts are responsible for commissioning the full range of health services for their local populations including deaf people, and for ensuring that they meet their capacity needs through improving existing NHS services, and where necessary, by procurement of additional independent sector capacity.

Health Services: Pilot Schemes

Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) when he expects the NHS Whole System Demonstrator pilots in (a) Newham, (b) Kent and (c) Cornwall to go live; [202722]

(2) which parties are involved in the delivery of the NHS Whole System Demonstrator pilots in (a) Newham, (b) Kent and (c) Cornwall; [202723]

(3) which services will be offered to patients in the NHS whole system demonstrator pilots in (a) Newham, (b) Kent and (c) Cornwall. [202724]

Ann Keen: Since summer 2007, the three successful whole system demonstrator (WSD) sites (Kent, Cornwall and Newham), have been engaged with a consortium of leading United Kingdom research institutions in a period of detailed methodology and process planning in order to define the evaluation design for the programme. In addition, the sites have been working to finalise their detailed implementation and delivery plans.

The WSDs are now undertaking work at a local level to inform, engage and recruit general practices to the programme and press ahead with implementation of their delivery plans. Eligible individuals are being written to in order to gain their consent to involvement in the trial. As people agree to involvement in the trial they are being assessed and enrolled on the programme.

From April 2008, people have started to provide their consent to involvement in the trial and implementation is now under way. Following the consent of an individual there are several steps before mainstream service begins, e.g. eligibility confirmation, home visit, base-line evaluation interview, installation of equipment and training. The roll-out is planned to build month by month over the first year, with the lessons learned in the early phase helping to optimise the process.

Each of three WSD sites (Newham, Kent and Cornwall) is working with a variety of parties to implement local delivery plans.

The key delivery partners, as set out in the plans from the sites, are listed in the following table. Each site however, has to work with a large number of stakeholder organisations. Age Concern, Breathe Easy and the Alzheimer's Society are also informing the roll-out. Similarly, a number of software suppliers provide the site legacy systems and are involved in the implementation.

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Key delivery partners

Kent county council—Kent Adult Social Services (KASS)

East Kent and Coastal PCT

West Kent PCT

Viterion (supplier of TeleHealth)

Tunstall (supplier of Telecare)


Key delivery partners

Cornwall and Isle of Scilly PCT

Cornwall county council DASC

HTL/WebVMC (supplier of Telehealth)

Tunstall (supplier of Telecare)

Carrick Life Line

Caradon Life Line

Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust

Cornwall IT Services


Key delivery partners

London borough of Newham (LBN) and Newham primary care trust (NPCT). Service provision for LBN and NPCT is under the auspices of Integrated Adult Services (IAS).

Newham Homes

Newham University Hospital NHS Trust (NUHT)

Tunstall (supplier of Telecare)

Philips (supplier of Telehealth)

T+ Medical (supplier of Telehealth)


NHS Direct

The WSD Programme is driven by the need to understand the true benefit of integrated health and social care supported by advanced assistive technology (telecare and telehealth).

The research design for the evaluation of the programme is a cluster randomised controlled trial (RCT), with allocation to intervention or control group determined by randomisation of participating GP practices (the clusters). Those in the control group will continue to receive ‘usual care'. Participating users with the intervention group who meet the eligibility criteria will be offered Telehealth, Telecare or a combination of the two in addition to their ‘usual care’. The exact nature of the technology package that an eligible participant receives will be determined by the cluster to which they belong and by assessment.

The population groups who do not receive telecare/telehealth immediately will be reassessed to see if they are still eligible for these devices 12 months after their initial participation in the programme. In this way the control group have the opportunity to receive an intervention after a 12-month delay.

Health Visitors: Children

Mrs. Maria Miller: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the number of health visitors needed to deliver the Child Health Promotion programme. [202988]

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Ann Keen: It is the responsibility of local organisations to commission and develop services to respond to local needs, including the recruitment of health visitors. “The Operating Framework. For the NHS in England 2008-09” highlights the importance of children’s services and the need for local organisations to commission and provide the necessary services and workforce.

HIV Infection: Tunbridge Wells

Greg Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many residents in Tunbridge Wells borough have been diagnosed with HIV and AIDS; and how many of those were diagnosed within the most recent 12-month period for which figures are available. [202238]

Dawn Primarolo: Epidemiological surveillance by the Health Protection Agency shows that there were 42 residents of Tunbridge Wells borough council in receiving HIV-related care in the United Kingdom 2006, latest year for which information is available. There were fewer than five individuals newly diagnosed with HIV in Tunbridge Wells borough council in 2007, although they were not necessarily resident there.

Human Embryo Experiments

Mark Simmonds: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many human embryonic stem cell therapies have been developed in the UK; and how many clinical trials to develop such therapies are taking place; [200452]

(2) how many adult stem cell therapies have been developed in the UK; and how many clinical trials to develop such therapies are taking place. [200453]

Dawn Primarolo: The Department does not collect centrally information on clinical trials. There are advantages and disadvantages to using stem cells from a particular source, and it is still unknown which type will provide the most suitable material for a particular stem cell therapy. For this reason, researchers are continuing to explore the use of the full spectrum of stem cells in the hope of developing new clinical treatments, and this broad approach offers the greatest promise for medical advances.

Currently, stem cells are used in successful, well-tested therapies available in the United Kingdom. They include skin grafting, transplantation of bone marrow or umbilical cord blood stem cells to treat certain cancers and immune system disorders, and the use of stem cells from the eye to treat corneal disorders.

However, we are not aware of any clinical trials involving embryonic stem cells being carried out. One of the reasons is that no clinical grade, human embryonic stem cell-derived cell lines are available for use yet.

Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency: Finance

Mr. Burrowes: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the budget of the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Authority is for 2008-09; and how much of this is provided (a) by central Government and (b) by pharmaceutical companies. [202388]

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Dawn Primarolo: The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency's (MHRA's) operating income budget for 2008-09 is £97.9 million.

Of the total income, £11.1 million is provided by the Department to fund the MHRA's work in the regulation of medical devices.

The MHRA is a trading fund and the majority of its income is generated by fees for its medicines regulatory work which are mostly, but not exclusively, charged to the pharmaceutical industry. It monitors costs against fees charged and reviews its fee levels annually. Fees are set, in accordance with HM Treasury guidelines, with a view to achieving cost recovery for each activity for which it sets a charge. The MHRA is also expected to make a return of 3.5 per cent. of average capital employed paid as dividends to HM Treasury via the Department. For 2008-09 the MHRA's trading income budget is £86.8 million.

Mentally Ill: Community Care

Anne Milton: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what advocacy services will be made available for people subject to community treatment orders in the first six months of the operation of those orders. [203191]

Mr. Ivan Lewis: Although there will be no statutory requirement for independent mental health advocacy for people discharged from hospital under supervised community treatment until April 2009, general mental health advocacy will continue to be available in every strategic health authority area.

Mesothelioma: Screening

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what timetable he has set for the UK National Screening Committee to (a) review the proposed screening programme for (i) mesothelioma and (ii) other asbestos-related illnesses and (b) advise primary care trusts on such screening programmes. [202931]

Ann Keen: There are no proposals at present for the UK National Screening Committee to review and advise on screening for mesothelioma or other asbestos-related illnesses.

NHS: Anniversary

Norman Lamb: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what plans his Department has to mark the 60(th) anniversary of the NHS (a) nationally and (b) locally; and how much this will cost (i) his Department and (ii) local trusts. [202843]

Ann Keen: The Department plans to mark the 60(th) anniversary of the NHS in a number of ways. At a national level, activities include a service of celebration at Westminster Abbey, a history of the NHS publication, and focusing annual events including NHS Live and Health and Social Care awards around the 60(th) anniversary. Locally, NHS organisations are encouraged to celebrate in the most appropriate way for their staff, patients and local communities.

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The Department has a budget of £300,000 for national activities and to support local NHS plans. As decisions for celebrating NHS 60 celebrations at a local level are not determined by the Departments we are unable to provide costs for local celebrations.

NHS: Cleaning Services

Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make it his policy to bring contracted-out NHS sterilisation services back in-house; and if he will make a statement. [202757]

Ann Keen: Hospital trusts and all other healthcare providers are responsible for making their own decisions on decontaminating their instruments, based on local needs. Decontamination can be carried out from either onsite or offsite facilities

All organisations undertaking the decontamination reprocessing of surgical instruments—whether managed by the national health service or by the independent sector—must comply with the standards contained within the Medical Devices Directive (93/42/EEC), copies of which are available in the Library. Trusts are responsible for specifying the services required, in line with the Health Act 2006 Code of Practice for the Prevention and Control of Health Care Associated Infections. The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency is responsible for monitoring compliance with the standard for contracted-out national health service sterilisation services.

The Government have invested over £200 million in improving decontamination services in the NHS in England. We will continue to help hospital trusts to provide the highest standards of decontamination of instruments as part of their drive against healthcare- associated infection and to protect patient safety.

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