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New hospital mortality rate index to be used across UK
Date:6/9/2011

rding mortality, is a permanent and important part of the landscape."

The team was given records of all admissions to hospital in England for five years (92 million records) and linked deaths from the Office of National Statistics. In 10 weeks they produced a new index, the Summary Hospital Mortality Index (SHMI) based on the age, sex, method of admission and comorbidity of the patient. This has now been accepted by the Department of Health and will be used throughout England as part of a package to identify failing hospitals.

Professor Campbell highlighted a number major benefits of the new index, namely:

  • The SHMI is a single system where previously there have been several,
  • The SHMI is relatively simple,
  • SHMI will publish data quarterly rather than annually,
  • It will be implemented by the Department of Health instead of a private company.

Professor Campbell said: "This new index is a single, transparent indicator that will be used throughout NHS. It includes deaths that occur 30 days after discharge and so tries to remove the incentive of hospitals discharging dying patients to improve their mortality data.

"It will be published quarterly to allow better real-time monitoring at a local and national level. Attached will be explanations for healthcare professionals and the public on interpreting the measure, and it will be accessible to patients and the public on NHS Choices. It will not be used in isolation, but will be used with companion indicators and other supporting information."

Professor Campbell explained that the SHMI also provides the opportunity to spot failings sooner and therefore improve conditions and care for patients, saying: "Due to plans to publish the measure quarterly, hospitals will be able to monitor their overall performance in a timelier manner. There is the capacity for hospitals to be alerted to failings more rapidly than the existing annual report
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Contact: Amy Stone
a.f.stone@sheffield.ac.uk
01-142-221-046
University of Sheffield
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2 3

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