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Patients, parents and students are among those set to benefit from a host of new commitments to improve public serv...
Patients, parents and students are among those set to benefit from a host of new commitments to improve public services detailed in a White Paper on the Citizen's Charter published today.

Its key announcements include:

More information for patients

From 1998, patients will get information on the success rates of different types of treatment to help them assess the quality of their treatment.

More information for students Students will benefit from performance tables on teacher training institutions and, provided suitable criteria can be agreed, on universities.

Service standards for central government

League tables on targets for answering letters from the public will be published. And five other service standards, including consulting users and handling complaints, will improve government departments' and their agencies' service to the public.

Exam targets

Parents and pupils will benefit from new targets for pupil performance.

Home-school contracts

More parents will be involved in helping to improve their child's school as more home-school 'contracts' are produced, making it clear what parents can expect from schools and what parents and pupils are expected to do.

The Prime Minister said:

'At the heart of the Citizen's Charter is one simple thought: service users should come first. We all use public services. We all pay for them. They should be run for our benefit and meet our needs. 'This White Paper marks five years of the Charter programme. We have seen a fundamental change of culture in our public services. But I want to do more. This White Paper sets out a hundred ways in which we are going to improve services in the years ahead.'

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