Tag Archives: statistics

*  Across the country more than 1.5 million patients and their families will be in contact with the NHS every day. *  Approximately 170,000 people (the same number who attended the Glastonbury music festival) go for an eyesight test each week. *  Our NHS will help deliver around 16,000 babies at home. This is enough children to fill the Royal Albert Hall three times over. *  Each month, 23 million people (more than three times the population of London) visit their GP surgery or practice nurse. *  In a typical week, 1.4 million people will receive help in their home […]
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The reasons for the wide difference in mortality rates across English local authorities is a continuing source of controversy.  The Black Report, published in 1980, began a lively debate as to the reasons for these  inequalities in mortality rates (DHSS, 1980). The causes of inequalities in health and mortality are not yet clear, but one thing is certain. These causes are complex and there is no simple or quick way to equalise mortality rates across England. Part of the answer is for some individuals to change their habits and eg eat more healthily and take part in regular physical activity. […]
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An assessment of the Public Health England report Public Health England has launched a website which presents a collection of information on premature mortality among 150 English local authorities (Public Health England, 2013). The information is provided with the aim of giving local authorities an insight into the leading causes of avoidable early death. However the website displays serious shortcomings and is inadequate as a basis of decision making for resource allocation or political action. The data presented in the Public Health England report are, for each local authority in England, the total death rate under the age of 75 […]
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I had hoped I had written enough about this but yet again we get the use of “excess deaths” – a meaningless term – but one used over and again, often by those parts of the media eager to rubbish our NHS.  I also wish we could focus on how to keep Stafford Hospital open because of the value it can bring to the local community rather than see it sacrificed because of a history that is regularly re-written. The hundreds of “excess deaths” we keep reading about is derived from comparisons of various standardised mortality statistics.  The use of […]
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Anyone who has been at the sharp end long enough has had the experience of explaining what went wrong to grieving relatives.  You can apologise, and explain as honestly as possible what has happened, and sympathise.  It is true but of no comfort that the NHS is vast and highly complex and that most care is good most of the time. Recent research conducted for the DH across ten hospitals (selected at random) found that around 6% of deaths in hospital were avoidable; either something was done which led to the death, or something was not done which could have […]
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Whilst attention has been paid to issues around Hospital Standardised Mortality Ratio (HSMR[1]) at Mid. Staffs I have examined simple mortality rates.  The use of HSMR remains controversial as the ratio is influenced by issues around quality and depth of coding as well as interpretation and recording problems. I used figures which were not subject to coding or interpretation.  The mortality rate is just the number of deaths divided by the level of activity, easy to use and understand.  You could just look at the number of deaths but almost all hospitals are dealing with increasing levels of activity.  Crude […]
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Our local DGH is one of the 14 somewhat arbitrarily singled out for investigation over death rates – or as the press puts it for needlessly killing hundreds of patients.  It does have a long history of high death rates and extensive investigations have taken place.

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Almost one in five NHS patients seen in secondary care now treated by private firms, after Labour’s ‘patient choice’ reforms led to an expansion in the independent healthcare market, a report by the Nuffield Trust and the Institute of Fiscal Studies concludes.  But as John Lister writes “These figures are evidence of private sector expansion but need to be treated with caution: they only relate to elective treatment – and in fact the study only looks in detail at three elective treatments (hip replacement, gall bladder removal & hernia), with a grand total Independent Sector Treatment Centre provision of 24,000 […]
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Fabian occasional paper 8  This paper is based on the sixth Somerville Hastings memorial lecture delivered at Ruskin College, Oxford on the 7 March  1974 by Sir Richard Doll, Regius Professor of Medicine at Oxford University. The lecture was endowed by the Socialist Medical Association. This   pamphlet,   like  all  publications  of  the   Fabian   Society, represents not the collective view of the Society but only the view of the  individual who prepared it.   Fabian Society,  11 Dartmouth Street, London SW1H 9BN. November 1974  ISBN 7163 3008 3 INTRODUCTION Few people who were not members of the organisations in which Somerville Hastings worked can have any appreci­ation of […]
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