HC Deb 12 May 2003 vol 405 cc105-6W
Dr. Evan Harris

To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to his answer of 1 April,Official Report, column 688W, on the Health Protection Agency, if he will list the programmes; and what slippage has occurred to contribute to the underspends of revenue and capital. [110892]

Ms Blears

The total funds identified amounted to a small proportion of the combined turnover of the three organisations and cover a number of projects across the spectrum of their activity, both for revenue and capital expenditure. The reasons for the slippages are similarly varied, for example, delays in advertising new posts or in ensuring that capital investment projects had proper justification and approval. An example of the former is the creation of a travel health advice service, which comprised a consortium of the Public Health Laboratory Service, the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, University College, London and the University of Liverpool. Here, the development of advertisements for new staff took longer than expected. An example of the latter is the upgrading of the communications facilities at the Colindale site. Both of these projects are now moving forward.

The Health Protection Agency is factoring into its business planning how projects which have suffered delays may be brought up to speed.