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The Government Equalities Office sponsors the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC). The EHRC has not paid any senior staff bonuses since its inception in October 2007.
Asked by Lord Taylor of Warwick
To ask Her Majesty's Government why they decided Gurkha soldiers must have 20 years' military service to live in the United Kingdom when the standard length of Army service by Gurkhas is 15 years. [HL3272]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord West of Spithead): On 24 April 2009 the Government published guidance for caseworkers dealing with applications for settlement from Gurkhas who were discharged before 1 July 1997. Under this guidance one of the criteria was that anyone with 20 or more years of service could have settled in the UK.
The 20 years' service criteria recognised exceptional ability and quality of service as well as commitment, in particular from those who worked their way through the ranks and saw their service extended. However, it is not the case that this was the only criterion under which ex-Gurkhas may have qualified to settle under the terms of this guidance.
On 21 May 2009 the Home Secretary announced that any former Gurkha with more than four years' service who had been discharged from the Brigade of Gurkhas before 1 July 1997 would be eligible for settlement in the UK.
Asked by Lord Morris of Manchester
To ask Her Majesty's Government further to the Written Statement by Lord Darzi of Denham on 20 May (WS 121-2), what level of additional discretionary funding will be made available to trustees for disbursement to widows and other dependants according to financial need. [HL4863]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Darzi of Denham): Work is now under way by departmental officials to implement the Government's response to Lord Archer's report, which will include the level of funding to be made available for disbursement to widows and other dependants. No decision on this has yet been taken.
Asked by Lord Morris of Manchester
To ask Her Majesty's Government further to the Written Answer by Lord Darzi of Denham on 29 June (WA 15) indicating that officials at the Department of Health did not meet the Macfarlane Trust to discuss financial or other details of the Government's response to Lord Archer of Sandwell's report prior to the publication of their response, whether their assessment of the average level of disbursement to the Macfarlane Trust's beneficiaries at £6,400 was the average level of disbursement to both the infected and non-infected beneficiary community. [HL4887]
To ask Her Majesty's Government further to the Written Answer by Lord Darzi of Denham on 29 June (WA 15) indicating that officials at the Department of Health did not meet the Macfarlane Trust prior to publication of the Government's response to the Archer report, whether the average level of disbursement to the Macfarlane Trust's infected beneficiary community was £8,600 in the financial year ended 31 March 2009, as represented in the submission from the Macfarlane Trust dated 1 July 2009. [HL4888]
Lord Darzi of Denham: I refer the noble Lord to my earlier reply (WA 15) which said that a broad indicator of the annual level of benefit currently available through the Macfarlane Trust was calculated by dividing the
16 July 2009 : Column WA253
The Macfarlane Trust has made representations showing average disbursements to infected beneficiaries based on different denominators. Such calculations provide helpful, but broad, indicators of the typical level of benefit currently available to different categories of beneficiary.
Asked by Lord Morris of Manchester
To ask Her Majesty's Government further to the Written Statement by Lord Darzi of Denham on 20 May (WA 121-2), when the Department of Health will respond as a whole to the written submission from the Macfarlane Trust dated 1 July regarding the implementation of that Statement; and when their response to the Macfarlane Trust will be published. [HL4889]
Lord Darzi of Denham: The Government have published their response to the recommendations in Lord Archer's report. Further helpful representations from the Macfarlane Trust have recently been received, and a reply will be given shortly.
To ask Her Majesty's Government further to the Written Answer by Lord Warner on 13 March 2006 (WA 192-3), how many additional and replacement cardiac catheter laboratories have been commissioned since 2001 under the major capital programme; and what was the total cost of the Treasury-funded cardiac capital programme. [HL4907]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Darzi of Denham): Catheter laboratories are the facilities in which cardiologists undertake the main cardiological interventions for patients, such as angiography, angioplasty, pacemaker and implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) implants. As part of the National Service Framework for Coronary Heart Diseases there has been a national programme to increase the number of catheter laboratories across the country and also replace old and outdated facilities. There are two main routes through which this has been delivered.
First, there is the £613 million revascularisation capital programme that started in 2001 and is due to be completed in 2009. This has been funded by the department and strategic health authorities.
Secondly, there is the £125 million Big Lottery Fund catheter laboratories programme that started in 2001 and was completed in 2006. This was funded half by the lottery and half by the department.
The revascularisation capital programme comprised 29 developments across the country and included two completely new cardiothoracic centres, where services had not existed before, at Wolverhampton and Basildon and Thurrock. It provided major replacement centres
16 July 2009 : Column WA254
The Big Lottery Fund catheter laboratories programme made its first installations in 2002 and was completed in 2006. The programme has provided 90 brand new catheter laboratories; 72 of these are additional catheter laboratories and 18 replaced old and out-dated technology. Sixty-three of these laboratories have been developed in district general hospitals to provide improved local access (59 additional and four replacement) and 27 have been in tertiary centres cardiac centres (13 additional and 14 replacement) over and above the investment from the revascularisation capital programme.
|Summary-Catheter Laboratories across Both Programmes|
|Programme||Additional Catheter Labs||Replacement Catheter Labs||Total|
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many NHS patients are on a waiting list for a coronary angiography procedure in each strategic health authority area in England; and what is the average waiting time for each such area. [HL4908]
Lord Darzi of Denham: At the end of May 2009 there were 8,310 people waiting for an angiogram in England, and 98 per cent of these were waiting three months or less and nobody was waiting longer than six months.
The waiting list in each strategic health authority (SHA) and the average wait for people on the waiting list at the end of May 2009 is shown in the table below.
|SHA Name||31.5.09||Average wait per person by week|
To put this in perspective, five years ago (on 31 May 2004) there were 23,375 people waiting for an angiogram in England and 68 per cent of these were waiting three months or less and 6 per cent were waiting longer than six months.
Overall the total numbers waiting have reduced by 64 per cent and the number of people waiting over three months has reduced by 98 per cent.
Asked by Lord Jones of Cheltenham
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many instances of notifiable diseases brought into the United Kingdom by (a) visitors, and (b) returnees from abroad, have been recorded in the last five years for which figures are available, and from which countries did those cases originate. [HL4912]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Darzi of Denham): Information about the travel history or status of patients with notifiable infectious diseases is not collected as it is not required to be reported by registered medical practitioners under the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984. The 1984 Act requires the minimum essential information to be reported to enable prompt investigation and response to protect public health.
Data on statutory notifications of infectious diseases are collated and published by the Health Protection Agency (HPA). A copy of the HPA's latest annual report on statutory notifications of infectious diseases for 2007 has been placed in the Library.
Asked by Lord Baker of Dorking
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many applications were made for places in higher education institutions in each of the past three years; and what is the forecast number for 2009-10. [HL4800]
The Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and Ministry of Defence (Lord Drayson): The total number of applicants to full-time undergraduate courses via UCAS for the years 2006, 2007 and 2008 are shown in the table. Estimates for the final number of applicants in 2009 are not held centrally. On 9 July, UCAS will publish figures showing the number of applicants who had applied by 30 June, which is the closing date for applications to UCAS's main application scheme.
|Applicants to full-time undergraduate courses at UK institutions UK and overseas applicants|
|Year of entry||Applicants|
To ask Her Majesty's Government further to the Written Answer by Baroness Kinnock of Holyhead on 2 July (WA 88) and having regard to the statements by the Indian Ministry of Home Affairs in their letter dated 27 January 2006 to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) in response to a request from the FCO, whether there are any circumstances in which a person would not have become a British Overseas Citizen under Article 6(1) of the Hong Kong (British Nationality) Order 1986 at midnight on 1 July 1997 if (a) immediately before midnight on 1 July 1997 he was a British Dependent Territories citizen, and (b) at birth he was an Indian citizen by descent who also acquired British Dependent Territories citizenship, and (c) he ceased to be a British Dependent Territories citizen by operation of Article 3 of the 1986 Order, and (d) before 1 July 1997 he had already attained full age (18) for the purposes of Indian law, and (e) he did not renounce British Dependent Territories citizenship upon attaining full age but has never acquired a United Kingdom passport, and (f) he has never held any other nationality or citizenship, other than those referred to in (a) to (e). [HL4978]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord West of Spithead): Such a person will have become a British overseas citizen. This status will be recognised, subject to his being able to provide the relevant documents to establish his citizenship.
Asked by The Earl of Shrewsbury
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they intend to levy a tax on the ownership of horses; if so, what amount would be payable per animal; and whether they intend to extend that tax to the ownership of ponies and native horse or pony breeds. [HL4899]
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Davies of Oldham): Specific proposals on how responsibilities and costs for animal health could be shared in the future, including the scope and application of a registration-based disease levy, have been subject to a recent three-month period of intensive public consultation. Final decisions as to whether owners of horses should contribute to a disease levy will be taken in the light of responses to that public consultation.
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