§ Mr. Kidney
To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent assessment he has made of the benefit to MS sufferers of Beta Interferon and Betaferon drug treatments; and if he will amend the guidance contained in circular EU(94)72 to promote wider use of such drugs. 
§ Ms Jowell
As part of our health technology assessment programme, an evaluation and pharmaco-economic analysis project is being undertaken on Beta Interferon for multiple sclerosis.
We are committed to ensuring that new treatments, including new medicines, are introduced into the National Health Service as fast as possible where they represent a genuine therapeutic advance and are cost-effective. EL(94)72 asked health authorities to establish a mechanism for assessing new treatments, and most authorities have now established prescribing committees.