HC Deb 26 January 1993 vol 217 cc684-5W
13. Mr. Raymond S. Robertson

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what evidence she has received of the response of patients to NHS trusts.

Mrs. Virginia Bottomley

A survey of patient satisfaction in eight trust hospitals, commissioned by the Central Office of Information, showed that 96 per cent. of patients were satisfied with the quality of service they had received, 48 per cent. felt that the service had improved and 44 per cent. felt that the service had remained the same.

20. Mr. Gapes

To ask the Secretary of State for Health when she last met representatives of North East Thames regional health authority to discuss progress in establishing NHS trusts.

Dr. Mawhinney

I have regular meetings with all regional health authority chairmen at which many issues, including national health service trusts, are discussed. The last meeting took place on Wednesday 20 January.

26. Mr. David Shaw

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment she has made of the effects on patients of the introduction of national health service trusts.

Dr. Mawhinney

In the first 12 months of the reforms, the number of patients treated in the national health service as a whole increased by 7.2 per cent. In trust units the increase was 8.2 per cent. Waiting time figures for the first wave trusts show that in the six months to March 1992 trusts reduced their numbers of over one year waiters by nearly 60 per cent. compared with just 50 per cent. in directly managed units.

Mr. Butterfill

To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many hospitals or units became national health service trusts in(a) April 1991 and (b) April 1992; how many will become trusts in April 1993; and if she will make a statement.

Mr. Sackville

Fifty-seven national health service trusts became operational from 1 April 1991 and a further 99 from 1 April 1992. The 133 third wave trusts already announced will become operational from 1 April 1993 bringing the total to 289. This confirms that trusts are clearly the right way to manage hospitals and with each successive wave, enthusiasm and support among management, medical staff and patients themselves is increasing.