NHS death rates 'more than US'

Patients in NHS hospitals in England are 45 per cent more likely to die in hospital than patients in the USA, according to new research.

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Health Secretary: 'Transparency key to improving NHS'

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has said "transparency is key" to improving healthcare in the NHS following a new damaging report on the state of care in the NHS.

Mr Hunt claims the current government has shone an "unprecedented spotlight" on poor care and established inspection regimes to tackle problems in the NHS.

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt Credit: Neil Hall/PA Wire

"This Government has shone an unprecedented spotlight on poor care through the Keogh review of 14 hospitals with persistently high rates, and taken tough action to tackle these problems by placing 11 hospitals in special measures."

"Professor Don Berwick, a renowned international expert in patient safety and adviser to President Obama, published an independent report last month which said clearly that the NHS has the potential to be one of the safest healthcare systems in the world.

"Transparency is key to making this a reality."

Keogh: 'Figures can be used to improve NHS'

Figures showing that patients in NHS hospitals are 45 per cent more likely to die in hospital than patients in the US should be used to improve performance, according to the Medical Director of NHS England.

Sir Bruce Keogh said he wanted to use the figures to tackle the issue instead of disregarding any evidence deemed too "inconvenient or embarrassing".

"I want our NHS to be based on evidence. I don't want to disregard stuff that might be inconvenient or embarrassing", Keogh said during an interview with Channel 4 News.

Sir Bruce Keogh, the Medical Director of NHS England Credit: PA Wire

"The HSMR exposed things in Mid Staffordshire and people spent a lot of time arguing about the methodology, about the data. In the meantime bad things were happening. I don't want to be in that business."

Mr Keogh promised to bring the data to the attention of clinical leaders in England to see how the NHS can tackle the problem and improve care.

Read: Patients '45% more likely to die in NHS hospital than US'

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Patients '45% more likely to die in NHS hospital than US'

Patients in NHS hospitals in England are 45 per cent more likely to die in hospital than patients in the USA, according to new research.

For more than a decade, Professor Sir Brian Jarman - the pioneer behind the hospital standardised mortality rate (HSMR) measure which helped identify under-performance in hospital trusts like Mid-Staffordshire - tracked hospital death rates in seven countries.

New research suggests patients in NHS hospitals in England are 45 per cent more likely to die in hospital than patients in the USA

Mr Jarman found that in 2004, England was worst out of the seven with 22.5 per cent higher death rates than the average and 58 per cent higher than the US.

Despite an improvement in the figures, patients in the UK are still 45 per cent more likely to die in an English NHS hospital than in America.

Professor Jarman described the figures as "shocking" during an interview with Channel 4 News, adding: "When I saw this data, it was probably the stimulus for me to speak more openly about my concerns about the NHS.

"It's not to say that we don't have some very good hospitals, but I think we also have some very poor hospitals."

Read: Healing the NHS: Patient care 'should be top priority'

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