HC Deb 14 December 1998 vol 322 cc336-7W
Mr. Moore

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many acute beds were available in each health board area in Scotland in each year since 1990–91. [63131]

Mr. Galbraith

The information is set out in the table:

Scotland the work of disclosing criminal record information will be carried out by the Scottish Criminal Record Office (SCRO), which is already well established as a central vetting authority.

The Government's main objective in introducing these arrangements is to strengthen the safeguards for the protection of children. In line with this and to ensure a smooth transition from the current arrangements for employment vetting checks, the SCRO will phase in the issue of three new types of certificates provided for under the Act. Top priority will be given to the issue of certificates for those seeking positions that will involve regular unsupervised access to children. The scheme is to be self-financing with all applicants for certificates being charged a fee which, depending on the level of certificate sought, is currently estimated at being between £5 and £10.

We expect that it will take some two years to equip the SCRO for the new much expanded system of checks. In this time we intend to consult widely in order to ensure that the system will meet the needs of the community it serves.