Published: 26 March 2013
Acute Hospital Activity and NHS Beds information
Published: 18 December 2012
Acute Hospital Activity and NHS Beds information
Published: 25 September 2012
Annual Acute Hospital Activity and NHS Beds information
March 2013 Acute Hospital Activity Publication
As part of the March 2013 Acute Hospital Care and NHS Beds Information publication, ISD Scotland has released quarterly activity and beds information for quarter ending December 2012.
The quarterly activity statistics include information on:
- Trends in outpatient activity
- Trends in inpatient and day case activity
- Available Beds by Specialty & NHS Board of Treatment
- Quarterly Beds Trends by Health Board of Treatment
- HEAT target on rates of emergency inpatient bed days for people aged 75 and over
This quarterly publication is intended to provide timely summaries of hospital activity and beds information and to update published data for current HEAT performance targets.
There will still be some information which remains affected by the implementation of the new TrakCare patient management system (PMS). ISD will clearly identify statistics which are affected by the ongoing data issues and the main issues will be detailed within the background information section of the 26 March 2013 Publication Report.
The annual publication is the main hospital activity publication for these statistics and is designed to present the most comprehensive available information and discuss the most relevant current issues affecting this sector of health care provision.
For more information on the Acute Hospital Activity and NHS Beds statistics publication contact: Richard Hunter, 0131 275 6957 or John Quinn, 0131 275 6573..
For further details on the current data submission issues, please refer to the Hospital Records Data Monitoring SMR Completeness page.
This section of our website brings together information on different aspects of acute hospital care, sourced from hospital administrative systems across Scotland. Note that 'Acute' hospital care excludes obstetric, psychiatric and long stay care services that are covered elsewhere on our website. For reference, a listing of all Scottish hospitals (acute and non-acute) can be found by following the Hospitals link on the menu to the left of this page.
The Hospital Care pages contain information on outpatient activity, inpatient and day case activity, the number of NHS beds, and information on hospital diagnoses and operations/procedures. Please use the relevant links on the left side of the page to explore the information available on acute hospital activity in Scotland.
The majority of information within the Hospital Care pages is currently classed as National Statistics. Data on outpatient activity for Nurse and Allied Health Professionals are classed as Official Statistics. This also applies to information on Day Surgery and Outpatients Procedures and Beds Statistics. Currently the statistics are produced in line with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics, available on the UK Statistics Authority website.
These pages also include information relating to NHSScotland performance against a number of HEAT targets relating to hospital care. More detailed information on HEAT performance management system can be found on the Scotland Performs Website.
Acute hospitals provide a wide range of specialist care and treatment for patients. Typically, services offered in the NHS Acute sector are diverse. They include: consultation with specialist clinicians (consultants, nurses, dieticians, physiotherapists and a wide range of other professionals); emergency treatment following accidents; routine, complex and life saving surgery; specialist diagnostic procedures; and close observation and short-term care of patients with worrying health symptoms.
Another major part of the work of many acute hospitals involves the treatment of patients who have a health problem that requires urgent attention. Many of these patients will be treated within an Accident and Emergency (A&E) department and will not require a hospital admission. Typically a patient will be admitted as an emergency inpatient if their condition is considered by a doctor to be serious enough to warrant urgent hospital care and treatment.
In the past, most reported patient activity has been attributed in national information systems to consultants and general practitioners, reflecting perhaps a more traditional view of the consultant as leader of the clinical team. This has had the effect of obscuring or overlooking the clinical contribution, in both hospitals and in the community, of nursing staff, allied health professionals and other healthcare professionals in nationally presented statistics. In recent years there has been a greater emphasis given towards enhancing the role of these professionals but the information systems required to account for many of these changes have not been available nationally.
Currently it is difficult to describe and quantify accurately the level of operations and clinical procedures carried out in an outpatient setting. This is particularly relevant for monitoring how changes in clinical practice have enabled the transfer of certain clinical activities, previously requiring inpatient or day case admission, to outpatient clinics. Whilst outpatient procedure recording has improved in recent years, gaps in the completeness and coverage remain. Details can be found within the Hospital Care Operation and Procedures page.
Information relating to Allied Health Professional and Nurse-led clinic activity provides a wider perspective on the way clinical care is delivered in the modern health service.
It should be noted that that there are apparent differences between activity figures published within the Hospital Care, Waiting Times and Finance web pages.
- The figures for elective admissions and new outpatients in the Acute Hospital Activity publication are considerably higher than the equivalent information published on the Inpatient, Day Case and Outpatient waiting times web pages. This is largely due to the use of different definitions between the two sets of figures. For example, Acute Hospital Activity information includes non-waiting list cases, which do not form part of the published Scotland figures in ‘Waiting Times’.
- Figures for inpatient and day case activity in the Acute Hospital Activity publication differ slightly when compared to the equivalent information released in the Finance web pages. This is largely due to the use of different definitions for the two sets of figures. For example, the Finance “acute” activity excludes the specialty of Geriatric Medicine and patients treated in Neonatal and Younger Physically Disabled Units, which differs from the “acute” activity that is published in the Acute Hospital Activity pages. The Finance publication also excludes consultant-only transfers from the inpatient figures. ISD Scotland is carrying out further detailed investigations into these differences.
For detailed information on data sources and clinical coding used within Hospital Care analysis please refer to the Data Sources and Clinical Coding document [970kb].
Caution should be taken when comparing Scottish hospital activity and beds data with information from the rest of the UK as there are likely to be key differences in analysis methodologies and data collection processes.
The Office of National Statistics United Kingdom Health Statistics 2010 publication provides a single point of reference for the comparison of key figures between the four constituent countries of the UK. Hospital activity and bed statistics can be found within chapters 6 and 8 respectively. Whilst the four UK countries worked collaboratively to maximise the comparability of the figures, it is important to note that differences between the countries remain in the way that data measures are collected and classified, and because of differences between countries in the organisation of health and social services. The report includes the details of these differences where relevant.
Hospital activity data from England, Wales and Northern Ireland are available separately but should not be directly compared with published data from Scotland.
Information Services Division is actively looking at ways to increase user engagement across the organisation and is keen to gather customer feedback to help us improve our services.
ISD conduct an annual customer survey to evaluate performance and to help identify any areas where there is scope for improvement. The results of the most recent published customer survey (2010) are available in the ISD sub-topic the About Our Statistics. The 2011 survey report is currently being developed and will be published when completed.
Customers are also invited to complete a specific Secondary Care customer survey (first released in November 2011) directly relating to the publications hosted on these web pages and the analytical services we provide.
Users of the quarterly and annual Acute Hospital Care and NHS Beds Information publications are invited to feedback comments and suggestions by following the Rate this Publication link.
We intend to publish the results of the Secondary Care customer survey and the Rate this Publication responses here when the information becomes available.