HC Deb 29 October 1999 vol 336 cc1034-5W
Dr. Brand

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what recent representations he has received about the adequacy of the census data relating to the level of, and need for, care in the community; what guidance he has given to those answering census questions on care; what information he plans to collate with a view to submitting evidence to the Commission on Long-Term Care; and what discussions on the above matters he has held with the Department of Health. [96446]

Miss Melanie Johnson

The White Paper on the 2001 Census, published in March, announced the Government's proposals with respect to the questions to be asked in the next Census. This included, for the first time, a question on provision of care. This followed a lengthy and detailed consultation period including representations from both central and local government and others for a question on provision of care to be asked.

The question on which the Department of Health has been fully consulted, and which has been successfully tested, focuses on the number of hours of care provided per week (defined as help or support to others with long-term physical or mental ill-health, with a disability, or with problems related to old age) in three bands for 1–19 hours, 20–49 hours and 50 or more hours.

Final details will be announced in the Census Order and Regulations to be laid before Parliament shortly.