§ Ms Blears
[holding answer 20 January 2003]The Department commissions several annual surveys that include questions on lifestyle issues:
The Health Survey for England is a series of annual surveys about the health of people in England. This information is used to underpin and improve targeting of nation-wide health policies. The survey was carried out in 1991–1993 by the Office for Population Censuses and Surveys, which is now part of the Office for National Statistics (ONS). From 1994 onwards, the survey has been carried out by the joint survey unit of the national centre of social research and the department of epidemiology and public health at University College, London. The survey includes questions on smoking, drinking, obesity, fruit and vegetable consumption and in certain years, physical activity, but it extends beyond lifestyle questions and covers a wide range of subjects to do with the general health of the population.
The ONS general household survey, "Living in Britain", is a continuous survey which has been running since 1971 and is based each year on a sample of the general population resident in private; that is, non-institutional, households in Great Britain. It covers a wide range of topics of relevance to households, families and individuals, including questions on smoking and drinking.
The ONS omnibus survey is a multi-purpose survey carried out by the ONS for Government Departments and other public or non-profit making bodies. 675W Interviewing is carried out every month and each month's questionnaire covers a variety of topics, reflecting different user's requirements. Included among these from time to time will be questions on smoking, drinking and contraception.
The annual survey of drug use, smoking and drinking among young people in England is part of a series established in 1982 and provides national estimates of the proportion of young people aged 11–15 who smoke. drink alcohol and/or take illegal drugs.
Costs in 2001–02 £ million Health Survey for England 2.75 General Household Survey 10.26 Omnibus Surveys 10.24 Drug Use Smoking and Drinking1 0.18 1 Represents the cost of the Department of Health contribution to the ONS.