§ Mr. Burns
To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many staff within the NHS have been suspended from work as a result of allegations and complaints by whistleblowers in the last two full available years; 
(2) how many whistleblowers have been suspended from work within the NHS as a result of allegations and complaints in the last two full years that figures are available. 
§ Mr. Hutton
We expect a climate of openness and dialogue in the national health service and a culture and an environment that encourages staff to feel able to raise concerns about health care matters sensibly and responsibly without fear of victimisation.
NHS trusts routinely report suspensions lasting six months or longer to the Department. As at 31 December 2001, the latest date for which figures are available, 29 hospitals and community medical and dental staff had been suspended for more than six months. These suspensions are not as a result of individuals whistleblowing.
Information on the suspension of individuals in other staff groups is not collected within the Department.