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Hospital episode statistics: improving the quality and value of hospital data: a national internet e-survey of hospital consultants
  1. Stephen Andrew Spencer1,
  2. Mark Price Davies2
  1. 1National Clinical Lead for Hospital Specialties, The Information Centre for Health and Social Care, NHS Information Centre, Q5 Leeds, UK
  2. 2Medical Director, The Information Centre for Health and Social Care, NHS Information Centre, Leeds, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Stephen Andrew Spencer; andy.spencer{at}


Hypothesis Senior hospital clinicians are poorly engaged with clinical coding and hospital episode statistics (HES).

Aims  ▸ To understand the current level of clinical engagement with collection of national data and clinical coding.

▸ To gain the views of frontline staff on proposed improvements to hospital statistics.

▸ To gain an indication of likely clinical engagement in change.

▸ To understand the clinical priority for improvement.

Design Internet e-survey accessible from Academy of Royal Medical College Website.

Setting National Health Service (NHS) Trusts.

Participants 1081 NHS hospital consultants and two general practitioners who volunteered to take part.

Results 3.4% of the sample regularly access HES data; 21% are regularly involved in clinical coding and 6.2% meet coding staff at least monthly. 95% would like to access HES data and there was a strong support for using this data for appraisal, revalidation and improving the quality of patient care. In terms of improvements, 91.9% would be prepared to code diagnosis in outpatients given the right tools. The highest priority for improvement is clinical validation of diagnostic data.

Conclusions Clinical engagement with coding and access to HES data is poor. However, there is professional support for improvement. Clinical requirements should be considered in all future developments of national data collection to provide the quality and scope of data that is required to deliver the information revolution.

  • Hospital Episode Statistics
  • Clinical Coding
  • Information Governance
  • Data Quality
  • Quality Improvement
  • Revalidation

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