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Hospital death rates higher than expected
SALISBURY Hospital has been named as one of the worst in England for death rates.
Health information company Dr Foster has put Salisbury in a list of 16 trusts with hospital death rates that were higher than expected.
The annual survey, covering 2012-2013, measured all hospitals and placed 28 trusts in a group that had lower than expected death rates.
Dr Foster director of research Roger Taylor said: “Hospital level mortality indicators can provide vital insights into where problems are worst.”
Salisbury Hospital NHS Foundation Trust medical director Dr Christine Blanshard said the measure used by Dr Foster was complex, comparing the number of deaths in hospital with the predicted number after taking into account the age of the patient, their complicating medical problems and whether they were admitted for end-of-life care.
She said this measure, known as the hospital standardised mortality rate (HSMR), could fluctuate and the figure for April 2013 to September 2013 – the most recent – showed that the trust was within the expected range.
Dr Blanshard said: "We believe that it is important to regularly review all deaths within the hospital and, following a review of the 2012-2013 figures, we did not identify a pattern of ‘preventable deaths’ or patient care and safety issues. "
She added: "As part the review, we did however, use the opportunity to make improvements that further benefit our patients and their care and reduced patient moves and handovers within hospital.
“We have been working with nursing homes to reduce unnecessary admissions and ensure that antibiotics are given following catheter changes. We also implemented the Sepsis 6 campaign which ensures that the appropriate treatment is delivered within one hour of an initial diagnosis of sepsis."
She said Dr Foster acknowledged that HSMR should not be used in isolation. Using a wide range of indicators, including a number of measures of mortality, the national Care Quality Commission had put Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust in Band 6, which was the risk rating given to the safest hospitals, she added.
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