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Volume 461: debated on Wednesday 6 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) if she will estimate the cost of providing STARband treatment free of charge to all children with deformational plagiocephaly; (140729)

(2) what her most recent estimate is of the number of children with deformational plagiocephaly;

(3) what treatments for children suffering with deformational plagiocephaly are available free of charge through the national health service; what the criteria are for the provision of such treatments; and what reasons STARband treatment is not so provided.

Information on the number of cases of deformational (more commonly known as positional) plagiocephaly is not collected centrally. It is not, therefore possible to estimate the cost to the national health service of providing STARband treatment to every child who has this usually self-correcting condition. It is for doctors to decide whether to prescribe and for primary care trusts to decide whether to fund treatment with special helmets, such as STARband.