HC Deb 19 April 2000 vol 348 cc513-6W
Mr. Robert Jackson

To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will list the services which(a) his Department and (b) the executive agencies responsible to his Department (i) provide online and (ii) expect to be deliverable online by 2002. [119440]

Ms Stuart

So that the Cabinet Office can publish the spring 2000 report monitoring progress towards the delivery of all Government services electronically by 2005, we are currently collecting data, which will include our progress on delivering 25 per cent. of Government services electronically by 2002. I do not want to pre-empt that report but I can say that we currently provide a range of services electronically. Those included are:

NHS Direct on-line—(http://www.nhsdirect.nhs.uk) which supports the NHS Direct 24-hour nurse staffed telephone help line for people who want information and advice about health, illness and services. This service was launched in December 1999. Information and knowledge for patients and healthcare professionals will be delivered through the development of the National electronic Library for Health—(http://www.nelh. nhs.uk)—a virtual library designed to provide easy access to best current knowledge about health and healthcare, in order to improve clinical practice and patient choice. It is intended to give access to both healthcare professionals and patients. It is already being piloted and should be rolled out across the NHS by 2002.

Department of Health—(http://www.doh.gov.uk) The Department's website provides a wide range of guidance and services on line. Key examples include: Guidance and information on policies, initiatives and services Departmental circulars and publications are available online on the Department's COIN (Circulars On the INternet) and POINT (Publications On the INTernet) databases Chief Medical Officer's Urgent Alerts cascaded electronically to health authorities A dedicated corporate e-mail address for inquiries from members of the public Consultative exercises on particular policies or initiatives eg children's services planning and deafblind services Statistical returns from the NHS and local authorities Information alerting business to opportunities eg Private finance initiative standard contract form and guidance A management consultancy database which enables management consultants to register their organisation's details and experience which are then accessible through the departmental intranet to the Department's staff. Tendering opportunities—most recently human resource management development programmes for the NHS, a briefing Pack and expression of interest questionnaire were published on the website. Contributions to the pan-governmental sites—direct access government and the local government web ring A number of forms can be downloaded from the site (eg Section 64 Grants) Research and development funding—guidance and application forms for national and regional research and development programmes Links to relevant sites

Medicines ControlAgency—(http://www.mca.gov.uk) Website Application forms and some guidance notes can be downloaded from the MCA's website, as can order forms for publications and the catalogue for the MCA's Eurodirect publications service. E-mail All staff in the MCA have e-mail addresses and can be contacted electronically. There is also a dedicated corporate e-mail address for inquiries from members of the public. AEGIS (ADROIT Electronically Generated Information Service) AEGIS allows the electronic transmission of Adverse Drug Reaction (ADR) data between the MCA and selected pharmaceutical companies. AEGIS is a continuously evolving system involving close liaison between the MCA and participating pharmaceutical companies. AEGIS allows the supply of ADR data reports electronically, from the MCA's ADROIT system on demand, thus allowing access to up-to-date information and easy transfer of data to subscribing companies. The AEGIS system also allows messages to be sent to and from the MCA using the Mail facility. This allows the MCA to deal with individual company's specific queries. AEGIS enables ADR reports to be sent to the MCA electronically using the AEGIS e-mail system. The receipt of reports is also acknowledged electronically. GP electronic reporting of ADRs The MCA has worked closely with two general practitioner prescribing system suppliers (EMIS and AAH MEDITEL) to develop an electronic "Yellow Card" (the means by which ADRs are reported to the MCA by healthcare professionals). The report is accessed from within the GPs computer system and allows most of the relevant information about the patient and their treatment to be automatically populated from the patients records hence minimising time consuming GP input. RAMA (Remote Access to Marketing Authorisations) The RAMA service provides subscribers with on line, real time access to non-confidential information on all authorised medicinal products in the UK and additional confidential information on their own medicinal products and can track the progress of their applications. Subscribers additionally can create some parts of their applications on RAMA and send them electronically to the MCA for final quality assurance and assessment.

NHS Pensions Agency (England and Wales) Website—(http://www.nhspa.gov.uk) Scheme and NHS Pensions Agency latest developments Contact details for the Agency's pension services including phone numbers, e-mail addresses A comprehensive library containing Scheme information booklets and instructional guides Scheme regulations Employer newsletter Employer manuals of guidance Reports and feedback from employer/agency consultative forums The NHS Pensions Agency's annual report and accounts The agency's Member's Charter Complaints and dispute procedures Frequently asked questions Calendar of events Interactive discussion forum Links to relevant sites Download page for appropriate software Search facility and site map

NHS Purchasing and Supply Agency—(http://www.nhspa.gov.uk) The NHS Purchasing and Supply Agency provides the following services on-line for NHS trusts and health authorities: Electronic communications The NHS Purchasing and Supply Agency website includes purchasing advice and information to NHS Trusts, provides information, promotional and technical information in support of contracting activity and a web version of the Agency's contracts catalogue. Electronic catalogues NHS Supplies' contracts catalogue, with 4,217 contracts and 1,428 suppliers, produced on CD ROM, continued to be developed throughout 1999 in response to NHS trusts' suggestions for improvement. A web version of the contracts catalogue has been available since September 1999. 3,000 CDs are issued monthly with 140,000 products shown. Links to contracted suppliers Electronic links have been created between the Agency's website and a dedicated NHS-contract website developed by suppliers in a joint initiative with NHS Supplies. This link enables NHS Trusts to access a wide variety of additional product and technical information to aid their purchase decisions. Supplier profiles and information The development of links to supplier websites for contracted products incorporates a parallel development on the display of company profile information, to provide trusts with standard company information required as part of the tendering process. This information is now available to all trusts from a number of the Agency's contracted suppliers and eliminates the need for suppliers to provide such data in paper format. With over 1,400 suppliers more work is required during the year to obtain critical mass. European Union contract notices NHS Supplies has played an active part in the development of an information technology software package to allow the electronic transmission of contract notices to the European Union in Brussels. The heads of purchasing in the Department of Health and the Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions also supported this work. Contract management system During 1999, a contract work plan management system was developed in-house by NHS Supplies to enable buyers to record and monitor purchasing and contracting work in progress. Relevant information from this system will be displayed on the Agency's website to give trusts information on the Agency's detailed purchasing and contracting plans for 2000–01.

NHS Estates—(http://www.nhsestates.gov.uk) On the NHS Estates website, there is general information on NHS Estates, including download publications and policy information.

Medical Devices Agency—(http://www.medical-devices.gov.uk)

  • Services currently provided on line include:
  • e-mail links into the agency
  • Regulatory guidance
  • Publications catalogue
  • Corporate information, roles and responsibilities
  • MDA business plan, annual report and accounts
  • Contact information (including a complaints procedure)
  • Full text of hazard and safety notices and device alerts
  • Advice on reporting adverse incidents
  • Literature reviews
  • Information on global harmonisation
  • 516W
  • Links to related sites
  • Year 2000 information on medical devices
  • Notification of job opportunities.