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Public Health

Volume 405: debated on Wednesday 14 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what action his Department intends to take to clarify the responsibilities of health authorities and local authorities in the area of communicable disease control; [110958](2) whether his Department intends to establish a statutory notification scheme for laboratories; [110957](3) what action his Department intends to take to amend the powers exercised as a last resort over people, premises and property in circumstances posing a risk to public health;[110959](4) what action his Department intends to take to change the reserve powers available to the Secretary of State in the event that an outbreak of communicable disease is being mishandled. [110960]

:Responses to the consultation exercise which the previous Government conducted in 1989 suggested that there needed to be changes to the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984 in these four areas. However, legislation to make these changes was not brought forward by the then Government. The general issues raised will be considered as part of the review which we plan of the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act.