Sir Julian Lewis: The Minister will have heard the excellent speech made by my hon. Friend the Member for South West Bedfordshire (Andrew Selous), who talked about taking it on himself to send leaflets to his GPs to raise awareness. Does the Department have a mechanism for alerting all GPs to these conditions [paediatric acute-onset neuro-psychiatric syndrome PANS and paediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorders associated with streptococcal infections PANDAS], which seem to be relatively unknown? If so, could GPs be encouraged by her Department to consider prescribing amoxicillin or a similar antibiotic at a very early stage, because that seems to be an almost risk-free option?
[The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health and Social Care (Maria Caulfield): The Department does not regularly write to GPs because the NHS is operationally independent, but NHS England does and we can certainly speak to NHS England colleagues. They send out regular bulletins on a range of issues to GPs, so I will speak to my primary care colleagues to see whether that is possible. We do not have enough information at the moment about how many children in the UK are affected by PANS and PANDAS. In the US, scientists have suggested that the prevalence there could be as high as one in 200 children. …]