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17 Oct 2008 : Column 1556W—continued

Vehicle Number Plates

Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what regulations govern the bearing of representations of (a) the EU flag and (b) the Union flag on motor vehicle licence plates. [225018]

Jim Fitzpatrick: The Road Vehicles (Display of Registration Marks) Regulations 2001 permit the voluntary display of the GB Euro symbol on number plates. These Regulations would not permit without amendment the Union Flag or other national identifiers.

West Coast Railway Line

Paul Farrelly: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he expects Network Rail to end disruption to train journeys from London Euston to Stoke-on-Trent and Manchester at weekends during the modernisation of the West Coast Main Line. [226600]

Paul Clark: Network Rail has advised that the seven day railway will start with the new timetable in December. However, after the modernisation programme has finished, there will still be a continuing need to maintain and renew assets. This will take place late on Saturday evenings, on Sunday mornings and on Bank Holiday weekends.

Paul Farrelly: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he expects rail journey times from London Euston to Stoke-on-Trent and Manchester on (a) Saturdays and (b) Sundays to run as frequently as the weekday service. [226601]

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Paul Clark: The weekday off-peak service pattern and journey times from Euston to Stoke and Manchester will apply to Saturdays, and from 12.00 on Sundays, when the new timetable commences in December.


Breast Cancer: Counselling

Mr. Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many people treated for breast cancer also received psychological and emotional support during and after treatment in each of the last three years. [228126]

Ann Keen: This information is not collected centrally.

The Cancer Reform Strategy said that it is important for all service providers to have established pathways to enable patients to access specialist psychological support as and when they need it. It is for commissioners to ensure that adequate provision is available so that all
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patients, families and carers can access the appropriate psychological support for them. This includes establishing service level agreements with local mental health services for more advanced support.

Departmental Procurement

Mr. Prisk: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what proportion of invoices for goods and services procured from small- and medium-sized businesses were paid within 30 days of receipt by (a) his Department and (b) the agencies for which his Department is responsible in 2007-08; and if he will make a statement. [226495]

Mr. Bradshaw: The total number of invoices paid within 30 days of receipt in 2007-08 by the Department and its agencies for which the Department is responsible are shown in the following table.

The Department does not differentiate between small and medium sized businesses so the figures shown represent the total of all received invoices.

Total number of invoices received Total number of invoices paid on time Percentage Total number of invoices paid Percentage

Department of Health(1)






NHS Purchasing and Supply Agency






Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency












(1) Includes all payments made using the Government Procurement Card (GPC).

Drugs: Rehabilitation

Mike Penning: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many patients were prescribed methadone and other hard drug substitutes in the latest period for which figures are available; and what the size is of the waiting list for substitutes programmes. [226858]

Dawn Primarolo: The National Treatment Agency for Substance Misuse (NTA) collects data on the types of treatment a client receives via the National Drug Treatment Monitoring System (NDTMS). The majority of clients will have received methadone, as part of their treatment programme/regime. Other substitute medication which clients may have received includes buprenorphine and diamorphine. However the data do not differentiate between the types of substitute medication prescribed to clients.

Type of treatment 2007-08

Specialist prescribing


GP prescribing


These figures may overlap as clients can receive treatment in both a specialist and GP setting in any given year.

The following is taken from NDTMS statistics published in October 2008 and relates to the period 1 April 2007 to 31 March 2008.

Waiting times for treatments started during 2007-08—first and subsequent interventions
Waiting time less than or equal to 3 weeks Waiting time greater than 3 weeks
Modality Number Percentage Number Percentage

Specialist prescribing





GP prescribing





The report from which these figures are taken is available for download from the NTA website at:

Health Services: Per Capita Costs

Mr. Ancram: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much was spent per head on health in (a) rural and (b) urban areas in 2007-08. [228107]

Mr. Bradshaw: The information requested is not collected centrally.

NHS: Reorganisation

Mr. Gordon Prentice: To ask the Secretary of State for Health which NHS hospital trusts are bidding for foundation trust status; and what criteria must be satisfied before they can achieve such status. [225974]

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Mr. Bradshaw: The decision to authorise a national health service foundation trust rests entirely with Monitor (the statutory name for which is the Independent Regulator of NHS Foundation Trusts). Applicants must demonstrate to Monitor that they are:

An applicant trust must receive the Secretary of State's support in order to apply to Monitor for authorisation. Five NHS hospital trusts made a formal application for Secretary of State's support on 1 October 2008. These are:

There are currently 21 NHS hospital trusts undergoing or awaiting assessment by Monitor (including deferrals). These are:

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Vaccination: Children

Mrs. Maria Miller: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent representations he has received on the adequacy of the supply and distribution of vaccines for children and babies. [227439]

Dawn Primarolo [holding answer 16 October 2008]: I can confirm that I have had no recent representations about the adequacy of the supply and distribution of vaccines for children and babies. The Department has received correspondence on vaccine issues and these have and continue to be responded to.

The immunisation branch of the Department is in constant contact with primary care trusts and general practitioners to ensure appropriate vaccine supply is maintained.


Armed Forces: Hospitals

Frank Dobson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence which armed forces hospitals have been closed in the last 30 years; and what the date of each such closure was. [226658]

Mr. Kevan Jones [holding answer 15 October 2008]: Details of the British Military Hospitals (BMH) that have closed since 1978 are shown as follows.

Country Hospital Closed


Princess of Wales RAF Hospital, Ely


Royal Naval Hospital, Stonehouse (Plymouth)


Queen Elizabeth Military Hospital, Woolwich


Cambridge Military Hospital, Aldershot


Princess Alexandra RAF Hospital, Wroughton


Princess Mary RAF Hospital, Halton


Duchess of Kent Military Hospital, Catterick


Duchess of Kent Psychiatric Hospital, Catterick


Royal Hospital Haslar, Gosport



BMH Dhekelia(1)



Royal Naval Hospital, Gibraltar(2)


Falkland Islands

Military Wing at King Edward VII Memorial Hospital



BMH Dharan


Hong Kong

British Military Hospital, Kings Park


(1) The Princess Mary Hospital at Akrotiri remains in operation.
(2) Medical care is provided by the new, purpose built Princess Royal Medical Centre.

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Officials are working to retrieve information on BMHs in Germany and to identify other overseas hospitals that closed during the last 30 years. However any records retained will have been archived and cannot be immediately accessed. I will write to my right hon. Friend once this exercise is complete to advise him of the results.

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