Previous Section Index Home Page

21 May 2009 : Column 1591W—continued

Departmental Reviews

Mr. Vara: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many (a) review and (b) taskforce projects his Department has commissioned in each of the last five years; what the purpose of each such project is; when each such project (i) began and (ii) was completed; what the cost of each such project was; and if he will make a statement. [275971]

Mr. Bradshaw: Summary information on taskforces and other standing bodies is available in the annual Cabinet Office publication “Public Bodies”. Copies of “Public Bodies 2008” are available in the Library.

Detailed information on the Department’s advisory bodies can be found on the Department’s website at:

Information about reviews commissioned in the last five years could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Departmental Stationery

Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what proportion of office supplies purchased by his Department were recycled products in the latest period for which figures are available. [275345]

Mr. Bradshaw: During the year April 2008 to March 2009 the proportion of office supplies purchased by this Department equated to 30.9 per cent.

The Department’s stationery contract does not presently require the supply of recycled supplies. The Office of Government Commerce Buying Solutions are currently tendering for a pan-government collaborative office supplies framework, which we hope will achieve a more sustainable framework.


Annette Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps his Department has taken to reduce the number of avoidable epilepsy-related deaths in childhood since the National Sentinel Audit of Epilepsy-Related Deaths in 2002. [275871]

Ann Keen: The risk factors associated with sudden unexpected death in epilepsy (SUDEP) are poorly controlled epilepsy and a history of seizures at night. Detailed information on epilepsy, and the risk factors associated with SUDEP, has been made available on the NHS Choices website

21 May 2009 : Column 1592W

in a form which can be easily accessed and understood by those with epilepsy, their families and carers.

Mr. Truswell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many children (a) under the age of 12 and (b) aged between 12 and 16 years had been diagnosed with epilepsy on the latest date for which figures are available. [275889]

Ann Keen: This information is not collected centrally.

Mr. Truswell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps he has taken to assess his Department’s progress against the recommendations of its 2003 Epilepsy Action Plan; and if he will make a statement. [275891]

Ann Keen: The National Service Framework for Long-Term Conditions is now the key policy document for improving health and social care services for people with neurological conditions including epilepsy.

Annette Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps his Department has taken to address the serious weaknesses in the care of people with epilepsy referred to in the Chief Medical Officer's Annual Report of 2001. [275872]

Ann Keen: There is a wide range of initiatives under way to improve services for patients with epilepsy. The National Service Framework for Long-Term Conditions and clinical guidance published by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence provide local national health service organisations with evidence-based markers of good practice to support service improvements. In addition, wider policy developments, including the Next Stage Review, World Class Commissioning, the information and choice agenda, the Transforming Community Services programme and work on care planning for people with long-term conditions, are continuing to contribute to improvements to epilepsy services.

Annette Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps his Department has taken to reduce levels of misdiagnosis of epilepsy. [275873]

Ann Keen: Epilepsy can be difficult to diagnose because there are many other conditions that can cause seizures, such as migraines or panic attacks. There are no specific tests for epilepsy, however in some cases tests can highlight an underlying medical condition which may be causing the seizures.

Detailed medical advice, suitable for health professionals, on the issues surrounding the problems in diagnosis of epilepsy has been made available at the NHS Evidence website:

Fertility: Medical Treatments

Grant Shapps: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many assisted conception treatments were carried out by (a) the NHS and (b) a private provider in each region in each of the last five years; and how many such treatments were given by (i) in
21 May 2009 : Column 1593W
vitro fertilisation, (ii) intracytoplasmic sperm injection and (iii) intrauterine insemination; [276755]

(2) how much the NHS spent on assisted conception treatment in each region in each of the last five years; [276763]

(3) how many assisted conception treatments were commissioned by each primary care trust in each of the last five years. [276764]

Dawn Primarolo: We do not hold this information centrally. We are currently carrying out a survey of primary care trusts' policies on the provision of fertility treatment which will be published when finalised.

Health Services: Elderly

Mr. Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make an estimate of the cost per year to the public purse of providing (a) personal and (b) nursing care free of charge to those over the age of 65 years. [275448]

Phil Hope: In England, the Government accepted each of the recommendations of the Royal Commission on Long Term Care, except for the recommendation to provide free personal care in all settings. Making all personal care free would incur substantial additional cost. This was estimated in 2003-04 at an additional £1.5 billion; it can only increase in future years.

Since April 2003, all residents of care homes providing nursing care, including those placed by local authorities, have received national health service funding of the nursing element of their care, rather than that element of their care being provided by the local council and subject to means testing. Information on the costs to the NHS of free nursing care in nursing homes is not collected centrally.

21 May 2009 : Column 1594W

We will publish the ‘Care and Support’ Green Paper in June 2009. It will lay out a series of options around reforming the care and support system, to ensure that care is high quality and cost-effective; that people have choice and control over the care they receive and that the funding system is fair, sustainable, and affordable for individuals and the state.

Health Services: Waiting Lists

Ms Buck: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what each measured waiting time in each NHS organisation serving residents of Westminster was in each of the last 10 years. [276210]

Mr. Bradshaw: The Department collects a range of waiting times returns to monitor national health service waiting times performance. These returns cover referral to treatment, in-patient and out-patient stage of treatment, diagnostics, accident and emergency, coronary heart disease, genito-urinary medicine and direct access audiology. In addition, the cancer national database is used to monitor progress on cancer waits.

Data on the waiting times in Westminster in all these areas has been placed in the Library.

Heart Diseases

Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many grown-ups with congenital heart disease are being treated by paediatricians. [276572]

Ann Keen: The following table and notes shows how many grown-ups with congenital heart disease are being treated by paediatricians and other clinicians.

21 May 2009 : Column 1595W

21 May 2009 : Column 1596W
Count of finished consultant episodes for congenital heart disease* for those aged 16 and over by consultant main specialty, 2007-08
Activity in English NHS h ospitals and English NHS commissioned activity in the independent sector
Main specialty code Main specialty description Finished consultant episodes


Accident and Emergency (A&E)









Cardiothoracic Surgery



Clinical Haematology



Clinical Pharmacology



Critical Care Medicine









General Medical Practice



General Medicine



General Surgery



Geriatric Medicine






Infectious Diseases



Midwife episode















Paediatric Cardiology









Respiratory Medicine (Thoracic Medicine)






Trauma and Orthopaedics



Not Known


1. The NHS Information Centre has provided the count of finished consultant episodes for congenital heart disease* for those aged 16 and over, by consultant specialty, for the period 2007-08.
2. They have provided a list of the main specialty of consultants for each episode, not just paediatricians.
Consultant Main Specialty
This defines the specialty under which the consultant responsible for the care of the patient at that time is registered. Care is needed when analysing Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) data by specialty, or by groups of specialties (such as “acute”). Trusts have different ways of managing specialties and attributing codes so it is better to analyse by specific diagnoses, operations or other patient or service information.
Ungrossed data
Figures have not been adjusted for shortfalls in data (i.e. the data are ungrossed).
Finished Consultant Episode (FCE)
A finished consultant episode (FCE) is defined as a continuous period of admitted patient care under one consultant within one health care provider. FCEs are counted against the year in which they end. Please note that the figures do not represent the number of different patients, as a person may have more than one episode of care within the same stay in hospital or in different stays in the same year.
Primary diagnosis
The primary diagnosis is the first of up to 20 (14 from 2002-03 to 2006-07 and seven prior to 2002-03) diagnosis fields in the (HES) data set and provides the main reason why the patient was admitted to hospital.
* The following ICD-10 codes have been used:
Q20—Congenital malformations of cardiac chambers and connections
Q21—Congenital malformations of cardiac septa
Q22—Congenital malformations of pulmonary and tricuspid valves
Q23—Congenital malformations of aortic and mitral valves
Q24—Other congenital malformations of heart
Data quality
HES are compiled from data sent by more than 300 NHS trusts and primary care trusts in England. Data is also received from a number of independent sector organisations for activity commissioned by the English NHS. The NHS Information Centre for health and social care liaises closely with these organisations to encourage submission of complete and valid data and seeks to minimise inaccuracies and the effect of missing and invalid data via HES processes. While this brings about improvement over time, some shortcomings remain.
Hospital Episode Statistics (HES), The NHS Information Centre for health and social care

Hospitals: ICT

Mr. Clifton-Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps are being taken to achieve a national interface between the Centricity and Medway x-ray providers; and when it is anticipated that the interface will be complete. [275992]

Mr. Bradshaw: Integration of radiology reports and digital images captured via picture archiving and communications (PACS) systems as a component of the national health service care record is a key requirement for national programme for information technology local service providers (LSPs) for their fully-developed patient administration solutions (PAS) in acute hospitals.

Where local PAS systems remain in place, as in the case of the Medway product, the integration process with the PACS is managed as an additional local service by the LSP at the instigation of the trust concerned.

Next Section Index Home Page