§ Helen Jones
To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what steps he is taking to ensure that the new Patient Advocacy and Liaison Service will be independent of the NHS trusts in which it operates; 
(2) what steps he is taking to ensure that staff employed in the Patient Advocacy and Liaison Service will be accountable to line managers outside the trust in which they are working; and if he will make a statement; 268W
(3) who will set targets for and monitor performance of staff employed in the Patient Advocacy and Liaison Service. 
§ Ms Stuart
[holding answer 6 November 2000]: Chapter 10 of the National Health Service Plan announced the establishment of a Patient Advocacy and Liaison Service (PALS) in every NHS trust. At the moment, we are conducting a major exercise to take the views of stakeholder groups nationally and locally on the specific details of how the new arrangements set out in Chapter 10 of the NHS Plan should be set up and co-ordinated in practice. The accountability arrangements and performance standards for PALS and PALS staff will be considered as part of this exercise. Also, the issue of independence will be resolved. A clear statement on the outcome of the exercise will be given in the new year.