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Volume 447: debated on Tuesday 20 June 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what assessment her Department has made of the oral health of the population in (a) Peterborough constituency, (b) the East of England and (c) England. (77921)

The information available centrally shows that in 2003-04 the average number of decayed, missing or filled teeth among five-year-olds in the area of North Peterborough primary care trust is 1.78. This compares with 0.9 in South Peterborough, 1.21 in the Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire strategic health authority area and 1.49 in England as a whole. People living in some parts of Eastern England receive the benefits to oral health from a seam of naturally occurring fluoride in water which runs from Hartlepool in Durham to Chelmsford in Essex. Peterborough however does not receive either natural or artificially fluoridated water.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health when she plans to implement the recommendations of the Medical Devices Expert Group in respect of the provision to patients of statements of conformity for dental appliances. (77576)

The proposal to provide patients with statements of conformity for dental appliances is currently under negotiation in the Council of Ministers working group that is reviewing the Medical Devices Directive 93/42/EC. Once the revisions have been agreed and incorporated into the directive the changes will be implemented into United Kingdom law within the laid down timescale for transposition.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what arrangements the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency has in place for the inspection of dental laboratories located in (a) China, (b) Turkey, (c) India and (d) South Africa which manufacture dental appliances for use in the UK. (77577)

The manufacturer of any custom-made dental appliance should ensure that it complies with the requirements of the Medical Devices Regulations before placing the device on the United Kingdom (UK) market. Where the manufacturer is based outside the European Community this would include appointing an authorised representative to register on their behalf with the member state competent authority where they have their registered place of business. The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency conducts an annual programme of inspections of custom-made appliance manufacturers and authorised representatives based in the UK selected at random.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many inspections of dental laboratories were carried out by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency and its predecessors in each of the last five years for which figures are available. (77578)

The number of inspections of dental laboratories carried out under the Medical Devices Regulations are as follows:

Number of inspections