HC Deb 30 June 2003 vol 408 cc171-3W
Nick Harvey

To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to his answer of 3 June 2003, Official Report, column 82W, on physical activity, if he will list the programmes supported by the £710,000 funding. [119427]

Miss Melanie Johnson

In 2002–03, the Department of Health coronary heart disease and cancer prevention business area allocated £710,000 to fund physical activity specific work.

The £710,000 was broken down according to the following areas of work:

  • £450,000 was allocated to funding the local exercise action pilot programme.
  • £239,000 was allocated to programme budgets.
  • £21,000 was used to fund 'Cycle West' under Section 64 funding arrangements.

The £239,000 programme budget was used to fund a number of physical activity-related projects, including the following:

  • work to develop physical activity and fitness measures to support general practice and for possible inclusion in the Health Survey for England.
  • Sustrans support for 'green' travel plans across the national health service.
  • funding of the Register of Exercise Professionals to support the National Quality Assurance Framework for Exercise Referral Systems.
  • Kids Club Network—nine regional 'roadshows' on physical activity for after-school providers.
  • the Countryside Agency—contribution to funding of pedometers as part of the 'Walking the Way to Health' Initiative.
  • research into the impact of the law upon the promotion of physical activity.
  • preparatory work for a Chief Medical Officer's report on physical activity and health.

Nick Harvey

To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to his answer of 3 June 2003,Official Report, columns 83–84W, on physical activity, if he will publish the report of the South East Public Health Observatory; what recommendations for further action emerged from the report's findings; whether good practice has been disseminated from well established local programmes; and if he will make a statement on plans for a comprehensive assessment of the promotion of physical activity by primary care trusts. [119428]

Miss Melanie Johnson

The South East Public Health Observatory prepared a report for internal use by the Department of Health in March 2002 to review the capacity and progress of primary care trusts (PCTs) and other health bodies to meet the information collections defined by milestone 3 of chapter one of the national service framework (NSF) for coronary heart disease (CHD). It was never intended that this report would be published.

The Department of Health considered the recommendations of the report and this influenced the document, "National Service Frameworks: A practical aid to implementation in primary care", which was published in August 2002 as a series of topic leaflets to support general practices and primary care trusts (PCTs). The topic leaflet, "Health Prevention and Improvement", also captures information on effective interventions to encourage and promote physical activity that emerged from Health Development Agency surveys of local prevention strategies under the national service framework for CHD.

The report also influenced the programme of local exercise action pilots, which supports local strategies on promoting physical activity. There will be one PCT-led pilot in each of the regions in England, based in neighbourhood renewal areas. The ongoing results will inform and lead action on physical activity across the national health service.

Under "Shifting the Balance of Power", performance management of PCTs in accordance with local priorities is largely the responsibility of strategic health authorities. Local strategies and policies to increase physical activity will be included in the Commission for Health Improvement/Audit Commission joint national study into the implementation of the NSF for CHD. Therefore, it is not appropriate for the Department of Health to propose an additional assessment of the promotion of physical activity by primary care trusts.