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National Committee of Inquiry into Higher Education: Report

Lord Renfrew of Kaimsthorn asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Whitty: Higher Education in the Learning Society, the report of the independent National Committee of Inquiry into Higher Education, was published by the committee itself on 23 July 1997.

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Copies of the report were placed in the Printed Paper Office on the day of publication and, in the light of heavy demand for the report, additional copies were made available at the earliest opportunity.

Lord Renfrew of Kaimsthorn asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Why the Report of the National Committee of Inquiry into Higher Education, "Higher Education in the Learning Society" ("The Dearing Report"), which was the subject of a Ministerial statement on Wednesday 23 July, was not laid before Parliament as a Command Paper.

Lord Whitty: The National Committee of Inquiry into Higher Education was set up as an independent body. Decisions on how its report should be published and distributed were therefore a matter for the committee itself. However, in order to inform the parliamentary debate on how the recommendations should be taken forward, we made copies of the report available to noble Lords through the Printed Paper Office on the day of publication.

Education Act 1993: Gloucestershire Judgment

Lord Addington asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they consider that the recent judgments Regina v. Gloucestershire County Council and the Secretary of State for Health ex parte Barry, known as "the Gloucestershire Judgment", will affect the provision of special educational needs under the Education Act 1993.

Lord Whitty: Part IV of the Education Act 1996 (which consolidates earlier education law including the Education Act 1993) contains extensive provisions relating to special educational needs. The "Gloucestershire Judgment", does not relate to this Act, and whether the judgment affects special educational provision is for the courts to determine.

NHS: Market Testing Savings

Baroness Cumberlege asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What savings were made in NHS spending as a result of market testing in the last financial year for which data are available.

The Minister of State, Department of Health (Baroness Jay of Paddington): No reliable information on savings arising from market testing is available.

Baroness Cumberlege asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What NHS services are (a) market tested and (b) what proportion of these services are now with outside contractors.

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Baroness Jay of Paddington: Over 80 individual services as shown in the following list have been market tested in the National Health Service in England--although in many cases only one or two trusts have market tested a particular service. On the basis of information supplied by health authorities and trusts to the NHS Executive market testing database on the outcome of market testing exercises since 1992, just over 50 per cent. of contracts by value have been awarded to the commercial sector where market testing has taken place.

    HOTEL AND NON-CLINICAL SUPPORT--Accommodation, Car Parks, Catering, Courier, Creche, Domestic, Environmental Health Management, Facilities Management, Gardening, General Patient Services, Hotel Services, Laundry/Linen, Pest Control, Portering, Security, Supplies, Switchboard/Reception, Transport, Waste Disposal, Interpreter.

    ADMIN, INFORMATION AND FINANCIAL--Advertising and Recruitment, Agency Staffing, Audit, Banking, Clerical and Secretarial, Computer, Consultants, Financial, Human Resources, Insurance, Legal, Management Services, Micro-filming.

    CLINICAL AND CLINICAL SUPPORT--Anaesthetics, Bio-Engineering, Chiropody, Clinical Coding, Continuing Care for the Elderly, Central Sterile Supply Department, Hospital Sterilizing and Disinfecting Unit, Dental, Clinical Genetics, Haematology, Infection Control, In-Vitro Fertilisation Services, Lithotripsy, Medical Physics, Mobility Provisions, Medical Photography, Nuclear Medicine, Ophthalmology, Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Occupational Health, Orthotics, Occupational Therapy, Oxygen Therapy Units, Prosthetics, Pathology, Pharmacy, Physiotherapy, Patient Appliances, Radiology, Speech Therapy, Termination of Pregnancy, Perfusionists, Mobile Cardiac Catheterisation.

    BUILDING AND ENGINEERING--Building and Engineering, Design, Electrical, Energy Management, Estates Management, Fire Systems, Flooring, Repairs and maintenance, Gas Supply, Glazing, Lighting, Painting, Water Services.

    BUILDING AND EQUIPMENT/SYSTEMS MAINTENANCE--Building, Building and Engineering, Estates, Equipment/Systems.

    TRAINING--Education, Fire, Staff.


    1. There is no standard definition of services or list of services within the NHS and those listed above relate to Units' interpretation.

    2. Service headings such as "Hotel Services" and "Facilities Management" include a wide and varying range of individual services e.g. catering, portering, security car parking. Again there is no set pattern of which services make up Hotel Services etc., but relates to individual Provider Units' interpretation.

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NHS Share of GDP

Baroness Cumberlege asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What share of GDP the NHS has received in each financial year since 1970.

Baroness Jay of Paddington: The information requested is set out in the table.

UK National Health Service expenditure as a proportion of Gross Domestic Product 1970 to 1996-97

YearProportion of Gross Domestic Product Per cent.(5)


(5) Using the GDP deflator of 2 July 1997.

(6) NHS expenditure provisional outturn figure.

Nurses' Earnings

Baroness Cumberlege asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What have been the average earnings of nurses, in real and cash terms, for each year since 1970.

Baroness Jay of Paddington: Nurses receive a wide range of earnings, dependent on factors such as grade and length of service. New Earnings Survey information for the period is, however, shown in the following table.

Average gross weekly earnings of nurses and midwives: full-time employees on adult rates

Cash £Revalued to real terms at 1996 prices using RPI £


1. Information from New Earnings Surveys' analyses by collective agreements.

2. Gross weekly earnings include overtime, shift, etc., premium payments, and allowances.

3. Prior to 1983, adults related to men aged 21 and over or women aged 18 and over. Data prior to 1983 have been adjusted.

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Nurse:Patient Ratio

Baroness Cumberlege asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What has been the qualified nurse:patient ratio in United Kingdom intensive care units for each year since 1970.

Baroness Jay of Paddington: The number of qualified nurses working in intensive care can be identified from 1981 to 1994: however corresponding information about numbers of patients is not collected.


Lord Robertson of Oakridge asked Her Majesty's Government:

    In view of the increases in the number of abortions in 1996 against 1995 of 8.6 per cent. for women resident in England and Wales and 15.2 per cent. in the age group 16 to 19 and 11.3 per cent. under 16, what action they propose to take to warn women considering having an abortion of the possible health consequences of doing so.

Baroness Jay of Paddington: To assist them in making their decision on any medical treatment including abortion, patients are entitled to receive sufficient information, in a way that they understand, about the proposed treatments, the possible alternatives and any

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substantial risks. A pregnancy may only be terminated if two registered medical practitioners are of the opinion, formed in good faith, that an abortion is justified within the terms of the Abortion Act 1967 as amended.

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