HC Deb 24 February 1998 vol 307 cc188-9W
Ms Shipley

To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what action he has taken to implement the recommendations in the SEAC Review. [31499]

Dr. John Cunningham

The review recommended a number of additional appointments to the Committee including an expert from the Institute for Animal Health and a representative of the public interest. My right hon. Friends the Secretaries of State for Health, for Scotland, for Wales and for Northern Ireland and I have made the following appointments to the Committee:

  • Professor Adriano Aguzzi;
  • Professor Roy Anderson FRS;
  • Professor Anne Ferguson;
  • Dr. Peter Goodfellow FRS;
  • Mrs. Harriet Kimbell, Representative of the public interest;
  • Dr. Christopher Bostock, Representative of the Institute for Animal Health.

The review recommended that members not on fixed-term appointments who had served fewer than three or six years should be formally appointed up to the end of the 3rd and 6th year respectively; and that those who had served more than 6 years should be put on a fixed appointment for one year, all with the possibility of extension in individual cases. The following additional terms on the Committee commencing on 1 January 1998 have been offered to, and accepted by, members:

  • Professor Sir. John Pattison (Chairman) and Dr. Robert Will, Director of the CJD Surveillance Unit, (Deputy Chairman), a further 3 years;
  • Professor Fred Brown FRS, Dr. Richard Kimberlin, Mr. David Pepper and Dr. William Watson, who have served on SEAC for more than 6 years, a further one year;
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  • Professor William Hueston, who has served on SEAC for more than 4 years, a further two years.

The review also recommended that SEAC meetings should be attended by; a technical adviser from the Central Veterinary Laboratory of the Department's Veterinary Laboratory Agency; an observer from the Health and Safety Executive; and an observer from the Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy (TSE) Research and Development Funders' Co-ordination Group, which represents the major funders of TSE research.

All other recommendations of the review have been implemented. An Annual Report will be published later this year and we will announce proposals for the participation of the Food Standards Agency in the Secretariat in due course.