§ Mr. Dobson
To ask the Secretary of State for Health to what extent the new national tariff system for NHS hospitals will vary to reflect regional differences in the cost of providing services. 
§ Mr. Lammy
[holding answer 13 January 2003]: The new national tariff takes account of unavoidable geographical differences in the cost of providing health care. The same market forces factor (MFF) used in the weighted capitation formula for resource allocation is used to adjust the tariff for individual providers.
More information on how the MFF is used to determine provider specific tariffs, and the actual MFF factors for 2003–04, is set out in Annex B of the guidance published on the Department of Health website: http://www.doh.gov.uk/nhsfinancialreforms/