§ Mr. Colvin
To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what representations he has received about the possibility of privatising the provision of travel vaccinations; 
(2) what consultation he is undertaking on proposals for the future provision of travel vaccinations. 
§ Ms Jowell
Inconsistencies and ambiguities have arisen over the years in the arrangements for travel vaccines and the prescribing of medicines for overseas travel and there are differences in the way that the various vaccines are dealt with. The Department, as part of an ongoing internal review, is seeking to resolve the anomalies which exist at present in the arrangements for travel vaccines. Once we have recommendations to present we will consult the relevant professional bodies.
As a routine, Ministers and officials of the Department receive a number of letters from interested hon. Members and members of the public about the arrangements for travel vaccines and the prescribing of medicines for overseas travel. These letters express a range of views. In particular, letters have been received from the Patients' Association, the Overseas Doctors' Association, various student unions, the Primary Care Virology Group, Pasteur Merieux MSD and the Royal College of Nursing.603W
§ Mr. Colvin
To ask the Secretary of State for Health what was the cost to the NHS of travel vaccinations in each of the last three years. 
§ Ms Jowell
It is not possible to say how much is spent in total on travel immunisation each year. The net ingredient costs for vaccines which may be given for the purposes of travel were:
Year £ million 1994 40.5 1995 47.0 1996 149.1 1 The vaccines are those preparations in the British National Formulary (issue 30, September 1995) section 14.6—International travel: Bacille-Calmette-Guérin, cholera, diphtheria, hepatitis A, meningococcal A&C, normal immunoglobulin, poliomyelitis, typhoid, typhoid-paratyphoid A&B and yellow fever. Some of these vaccines will have been prescribed for reasons other than travel.
The net ingredient cost refers to the costs of the drug before discounts and does not include any dispensing costs or fees.
However, these costs include some vaccines which will have been prescribed for reasons other than travel. It is not possible to identify separately the cost of vaccinating patients in general practice.