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Multiple Sclerosis

Volume 405: debated on Tuesday 13 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland pursuant to his answer of 31 March 2003, Official Report, column 532W, on multiple sclerosis, how many patients in Northern Ireland have commenced (a) beta interferon products and (b) glatiramer to treat multiple sclerosis since 1 January. [111847]

No additional patients have commenced treatment with these specialist medicines since 1 January 2003 because recruitment of the necessary specialist staff, as explained in the answer referred to, has not yet been completed. Interviews have now taken place for extra nursing staff, who are expected to be in post no later than June 2003 and regional joint medical/nursing clinics are in the process of being set up.