HC Deb 23 April 2002 vol 384 c249W
Mr. Hinchliffe

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the estimated total NHS expenditure was on pathology services in 2000–01; how many pathology services there are in England; how many public health laboratory services there are: and what estimate he has made of the number of private sector pathology laboratories. [49041]

Mr. Hutton

[holding answer 16 April 2002]: Information on pathology expenditure is not collected centrally; funding for pathology is included in the general allocation to the National Health Service.

The Department does not hold a central register of pathology laboratories. However, we estimate that there are around 300 NHS Pathology services in England based in acute Trusts. These include up to 1700 separate laboratories providing diagnostic services for haematology, microbiology, biochemistry, histopathology/ cytopathology, immunology and genetics. We also estimate that there are approximately 250 pathology laboratories in the independent sector.

The Public Health Laboratory Service (PHLS) comprises 46 laboratories in eight regional groups, the Central Public Health Laboratory (CPHL) (incorporating seven reference laboratories and a scientific support services unit), and the Communicable Disease Surveillance Centre (CDSC), both at Colindale, North West London. In addition, there are five PHLS collaborating centres serving the London population, and two other special laboratories.