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Mr. Kevan Jones [holding answer 7 May 2009]: The reserve forces contribute to overall military capability. They have been engaged in business continuity planning, but there is no specific task placed on the reserve forces in the MOD Pandemic Influenza Framework.

The mechanisms to protect members of the reserve forces are the same as for the general public—hygiene advice for all and antiviral drugs for possible cases and close contacts. Hygiene advice has been issued by the Department of Health but has also been promulgated through service communications. Unless members of the reserve forces are mobilised, they will be supplied with antiviral drugs, in accordance with Health Protection Agency and Department of Health guidance, through the primary care trust/organisation supply services in their home area. Their NHS GP will be responsible for providing primary care services.

The Defence Medical Services are responsible for primary care services for mobilised members of the reserve forces. For those serving in the UK, antiviral drugs will be obtained from primary care trust/organisation stocks in accordance with local arrangements set up for military patients. Those deployed overseas will be provided with antiviral drugs from military stocks. Those mobilised reservists requiring personal protective equipment, such as medical personnel, will be supplied with the requisite items through service supply.


Anabolic Steroids: Health Education

James Duddridge: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent steps his Department has taken to inform the public of the health risks of anabolic steroids; how much has been spent to that end in the last 12 months; and if he will make a statement. [274327]

Dawn Primarolo: The FRANK campaign, jointly funded by the Department and the Home Office, has a website and helpline advisers to provide information on the risks associated with drug misuse. FRANK makes it clear that the misuse of steroids is dangerous and can lead to some potentially fatal medical problems. The harmful short and long-term effects of anabolic steroid use are also described in the Department's publication “Dangerousness of drugs” (2003).

It is not possible to provide spending figures on the cost of providing information on anabolic steroids specifically, because FRANK provides information on a wide range of drugs.

Asthma and Depression

Mr. Ancram: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what proportion of the population in England were diagnosed with (a) asthma and (b) clinical depression in (i) 1997 and (ii) the latest 12 month period for which figures are available. [273306]

Ann Keen: Information relating to 1997 is not available. Health Service England (1996) reported the prevalence of doctor-diagnosed asthma as 21 per cent. of children and 12 per cent. of adults, or 14 per cent. overall. These figures indicated those who had been diagnosed with asthma at any time in their life, and do not necessarily indicate those with a current condition in 1996.

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The latest national diagnosed prevalence of asthma relates to 2007-08 and is reported through the Quality and Outcomes Framework. These records show that approximately 5.7 per cent. of the population of England were reported as suffering from asthma.

Information on the incidence of clinical depression in England is not available in the requested format. There is no information available for 1997, only for 1993, 2000 and 2007, through the Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Surveys. Information relating to those aged 65-74 only became available in 2000 and has therefore been excluded from the reply. In 1993, 2.2 per cent. of all adults in England aged 16-64 experienced a depressive episode, in 2000 2.8 per cent. and in 2007 2.6 per cent.

Care Homes

Keith Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether local authorities are required to consult the residents of a local authority care home prior to sale of the home. [273696]

Phil Hope: We are informed by the Care Quality Commission that the statement of purpose for each provider, including local authority-run care homes, requires the provider to consult with all service users about any change in service provision.

Keith Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the average cost of a care home resident to a local authority in the last 12 months for which figures are available. [273697]

Phil Hope: Information on personal social services expenditure weekly unit costs to councils with adult social services responsibilities for residential and nursing care by primary client group is collected and published by the NHS Information Centre for health and social care.

The following table shows the average cost per person per week to councils with adult social services responsibilities of a care home resident in England and Leicester by primary client group in 2007-08.

Primary client group England Leicester

Adults aged 65 and over



Adults aged 18 to 64 with learning disabilities



Adults aged 18 to 64 with mental health needs



Adults aged 18 to 64 with physical disabilities



Source: PSS EX1 return, NHS Information Centre for health and social care.

Keith Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the average residence charge to a care home resident in the last 12 months for which figures are available. [273698]

Phil Hope: The information requested is not collected by the Department. However, according to the “Care of Elderly People, UK Market Survey 2008”, published by the independent health care analysts, Laing & Buisson, the average weekly fees in for-profit care homes in England, as at 31 March 2008, were:

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Type of care Single room Shared room

Care with nursing



Residential care only



Care Homes: Infectious Diseases

Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) if he will place in the Library a copy of the most recent guidance issued by his Department on infection control in care homes; [271809]

(2) what guidance his Department has issued to care homes on recording cases of (a) MRSA and (b) clostridium difficile occurring amongst their patients; and to whom care homes are expected to make notification of such occurrences. [271811]

Phil Hope: The guidance, “Infection Control Guidance for Care Homes”, issued in June 2006, is available on the Department’s website at:

A copy has been placed in the Library.

The Care Homes Regulations 2001—Regulation 37 (1b)—require homes to notify the regulator, the Care Quality Commission, without delay of the outbreak of any infectious disease which in the opinion of any registered medical practitioner attending persons in the care home is sufficiently serious to be so notified. Notification must be confirmed in writing.

Schedule 4(10)—Regulation 17(2)—requires homes to record any incident which is detrimental to the health or welfare of a service user, including the outbreak of infectious disease in the care home and any injury or illness.

Care Homes: Manpower

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the answer of 31 March 2009, Official Report, columns 1093-4W, on care homes: manpower, when he expects the review of evidence to be completed; and if he will make a statement. [269049]

Phil Hope: The Department has been working closely with the Migration Advisory Committee to provide evidence on manpower in the adult social care sector.

The committee has now made its recommendations to the Government in its report ‘Skilled, Shortage, Sensible: First review of the recommended shortage occupation lists for the UK and Scotland: Spring 2009’, published on 29 April 2009. The Government's response will be published soon.

Chiropody: Elderly

Mr. Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps his Department is taking to improve foot care for the elderly. [273629]

Phil Hope: The forthcoming prevention package for older people will include a renewed focus on best practice for foot care services.

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Cholesterol: Drugs

Ms Hewitt: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment his Department has made of the clinical effectiveness of polypills combining statins for cholesterol reduction with low doses of other safe and effective medicines that reduce blood pressure. [R] [273359]

Ann Keen: The Department has met the original Polypill authors on a number of occasions. The initial conclusions were that this type of approach would be more suitable in developing countries rather than in more sophisticated health care systems such as ours where tailored therapy is more the norm.

The Department is currently exploring how to reassess this issue in the light of fresh interest in the topic.

Departmental ICT

John Thurso: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps he has taken to reduce the level of carbon dioxide emissions arising from the operation of ICT systems in his Department under the Greening Government ICT Strategy. [273556]

Mr. Bradshaw: The Greening Government Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Strategy sets a target for central Government Departments to become carbon neutral in ICT operations by 2012. In response to this target, the Department produced an action plan in December 2008 that details a series of projects and initiatives aimed at reducing carbon emissions by 40 per cent. against the 2008 baseline. The targets to reduce carbon emissions by 40 per cent. and to achieve carbon neutrality in ICT operations by 2012 are included within the Department’s Sustainable Development Action Plan (SDAP) for the period 2009-11. Progress against the targets will be monitored as part of governance of the Greening ICT Action Plan and the SDAP.

The Greening Government ICT Strategy recommends completion of 18 Quick Win initiatives for CO2 emission reduction. Nine of the Quick Win initiatives have been completed with progress at various stages against the remainder within the 2009-11 Action Plan.

Departmental Public Expenditure

Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to Table C11 of the Budget Report 2009, for what reason his Department (a) spent £1.5 billion less on its resource budget for 2008-09 and (b) spent £0.1 billion less on its capital budget than the planned expenditure set out in the 2008 pre-Budget report; and whether these sums will be available for spending in future years. [273624]

Mr. Bradshaw: The difference is due to the different presentation of the numbers. The pre-Budget report published expenditure figures on the basis of funding available to the national health service. Budget 2009 published forecast outturn expenditure for 2008-09. Therefore, the difference in figures is the estimated NHS underspend.

The Department’s end year flexibility stock is published each year in July in the Public Expenditure Outturn White Paper. The Department’s access to this stock is subject to normal Treasury scrutiny on the basis of need and realism, and the wider fiscal position.

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Mr. Lansley: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what financial assumptions NHS organisations are using to plan spending in years after 2010-11. [273633]

Mr. Bradshaw: Revenue allocations to primary care trusts (PCTs) for 2009-10 and 2010-11, the remaining years of Comprehensive Spending Review 2007, were announced in December 2008. The allocations represent a £164 billion investment in the national health service, £80 billion in 2009-10 and £84 billion in 2010-11. PCTs will receive an average increase in funding of 11.3 per cent. over the two years, a total increase of £8.6 billion. The announcement gives the NHS planning certainty over the next two years.

The Department does not publish financial planning assumptions outside the current spending review period.

Departmental Stationery

Sarah Teather: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how much his Department has spent on branded stationery and gifts for (a) internal and (b) external promotional use in each of the last five years. [273783]

Mr. Bradshaw: The required information is not held centrally and can be supplied only at disproportionate cost.


Tim Farron: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make an estimate of the (a) monetary value and (b) quantity of waste food disposed of from his Department’s premises in the last 12 months. [273439]

Mr. Bradshaw: The Department does not collect data on food waste.

Fractures: Elderly

John Austin: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) if he will bring forward proposals to ensure that mechanisms for primary care trust commissioning provide co-ordinated strategies for the treatment of older people who have fallen and fractures in each local area in England; [273667]

(2) what steps he is taking to ensure that clinical services in England adhere to treatments to prevent falls and fractures incurred by older people recommended by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence. [273668]

Phil Hope: The forthcoming prevention package for older people will include a focus on best practice for commissioning falls prevention and care for people with fractures and will highlight the importance of existing guidance set out by National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE). However, it is for local organisations to demonstrate to the appropriate independent inspectorate that they are meeting their responsibilities with regard to the guidance from NICE.

Fractures: Health Services

John Austin: To ask the Secretary of State for Health which NHS trusts in England ensure that the further assessment and management of fracture patients is
11 May 2009 : Column 624W
co-ordinated by a fracture liaison nurse or a similar designated person. [273123]

Ann Keen: Information on how national health service primary care trusts organise and deliver services to meet the needs of those with fractures is not collected centrally.

Health Services: Bank Services

Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what measures his Department has taken to support charities providing NHS services who had deposited funds in Kaupthing Singer and Friedlander bank; and if he will make a statement. [272543]

Mr. Bradshaw: The investment of funds by charities providing national health service services are regulated by the Charities Commission and as such follow the governance framework as set out by the Commission. Therefore, charities providing NHS services are outside the scope of the financial regime that is performance managed by the Department.

The Government have taken action to work with the Icelandic authorities and through the International Monetary Fund to ensure fair treatment for all United Kingdom creditors. We have been clear that we will fully support charities in pursuit of any claims through administration.

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