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Departments: Consultants

Volume 460: debated on Wednesday 9 May 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many consultants and contractors were employed by her Department in each year since 1997; and what the cost was to the public purse. (128042)

The Department does not collect information that would identify the numbers of consultants engaged for the years requested. Contracts do not usually specify the precise numbers of consultants and the numbers can vary during a contract.

Departmental expenditure on external consultancy services is set out as follows:

Financial year

£000

1997-98

11,911

1998-99

6,179

1999-2000

8,726

2000-01

6,859

2001-02

7,056

2002-03

7,266

2003-04

10,036

2004-05

12,800

2005-06

16,000

2006-07

26,532

1 The 2005-06 and 2006-07 spend is lower because the Department rectified some miscoding against the expenditure category codes to provide a more accurate figure of external consultancy spend.

2 Spend up to end of February 2007.

The Department has only recently started to record contractors on its Human Resources Information System, so figures have only become available during the last year.

The number of contractors working for the Department on 1 January 2007 was 223.