HC Deb 26 March 2001 vol 365 cc456-7W
Caroline Flint

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what specific support his Department has provided to coalmining communities since 1997 by(a) region and (b) health authority area. [154303]

Mr. Denham

There are 11 health authorities classified as coalfield communities by the Office for National Statistics. They receive general allocations to commission health care for their population.

In addition, seven out of the 11 health authorities are in health action zones (HAZ). They have received additional funding for this since 1998–99.

Details are given in the table.

In December 2000 the West Midlands Regional Office of the NHS Executive gave approval to the strategic outline case to vacate Royal Shrewsbury Hospital Copthorne South site, leading to replacement of the poor ward accommodation and education facilities with newer facilities on Copthorne North. This is a recognised priority for the trust.

The MAU, which will be based on Copthorne North, is also a priority for the trust, but needs to be considered within the context of the wider development of facilities on Copthorne North. The timetable for this can be established more clearly once the outline business case has been received from the trust and approval given.

1 Funded by the national accident and emergency modernisation initiative. This will enable the establishment of a MAU at both the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital and the Princess Royal Hospital, Telford.