§ Mr. Cousins
To ask the Secretary of State for Health who has the responsibility for the audit of national health service self-governing trusts and general practitioner fundholders accounts; and whether these accounts will be available to hon. Members.
§ Mrs. Virginia Bottomley
The Audit Commission has the responsibility for appointing the auditors of the accounts of general practitioner fundholders. A summary of these accounts is included in family health services authority's accounts which are submitted to my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State. There has never been a requirement that these should be published and we do not propose to introduce such a change.
The Audit Commission is also responsible for appointing the auditors of the accounts of national health service trusts. NHS trusts are required to present their annual reports, audited accounts and any report on those accounts made by the auditor at a public meeting which the trust is required to hold in every calendar year except the year in which it becomes operational. These reports will also be available to hon. Members.