(2) what discussions his Department had with the Independent Reconfiguration Panel on its review of services at Bridlington Hospital prior to the announcement of the Panel's decision;
(3) how many people the Independent Reconfiguration Panel employs;
(4) what payments members of the Independent Reconfiguration Panel receive;
(5) who makes appointments to the Independent Reconfiguration Panel; and what the duration of such appointments is.
Four members have left the Independent Reconfiguration Panel (IRP) since it was established in 2003. Dame Kathyrn Elcoat (left 19 May 2005), Lise Llewellyn (left 31 March 2006), Malcolm Stamp (left 31 March 2006) and the Right Reverend Mark Santer (left 30 September 2007).
Departmental officials liaised with the officers of the IRP over the timing of the publication of the IRP report on Bridlington in line with the protocol between DH and the IRP. The Secretary of State for Health also met with Dr. Peter Barrett (chair) and Richard Jeavons (chief executive) of the IRP in July 2008 to review all ongoing IRP work.
The IRP is an advisory non-departmental public body (NDPB) sponsored by the Department of Health. The IRP is supported by three full time staff, a chief executive, a secretary and an office support manager.
Members of the panel are entitled to claim £140 per day for work on IRP business together with normal expenses in line with civil service rates.
It is the Appointments Commission who appoints all members to the IRP and all original members have been re-appointed though the Appointments Commission. Although the chair of the IRP was reappointed by Ministers on 1 April 2005, this time he will be re-appointed by the Appointments Commission. Initial terms of office are usually four years.