Monday, December 19, 2011

ESRI: Activity in Acute Public Hospitals in Ireland, 2010 Annual Report

By the Health Research and Information Division of the Economic & Social Research Institute.

This report presents information on discharges from 57 Irish acute public hospitals participating in the Hospital In-Patient Enquiry (HIPE) scheme in 2010. Hospitals collect and return administrative, demographic and clinical information for each discharge to the ESRI on a monthly basis. The HIPE system is supported by the HSE which, together with the Department of Health, receive the data on a monthly basis from the ESRI. The hospitals that collect the data have available to them a reporting system which enables immediate and continuous access to the current data for management and other purposes.

At the national level, HIPE data can inform policy decisions and developments in areas such as hospital budgeting, service planning, workload measurement etc.

The report provides information on the number of day patient and in-patient discharges, together with their demographic characteristics and geographical distribution. The number and type of diagnoses and procedures reported for discharges, together with the case mix treated, are also profiled. Marking a change to previous reports, the demographic and morbidity analyses for Maternity discharges are presented separately to enable a more comprehensive overview of trends in this area.


Total Discharges

- Over 1.44 million discharges were reported by the participating hospitals compared to 1.41 million discharges in 2009 – an increase of almost 3%.
- Day patients accounted for 59% of total discharges in 2010, an increase of 4% since 2009. Given that day cases accounted for 53% of total discharges in 2006, the mean increase over the period 2006-2010 was 6.6%.
- In 2010 in-patients accounted for 41% of total discharges of which 60% were emergency in-patients, 18% were elective in-patients and 21% were Maternity in-patients. In-patients used just over 3.57 million bed days in 2010, a decrease of 1% from 2009.
- Females accounted for 53% of total discharges.
- Public patients accounted for 81% of total discharges (78% of total in-patient bed days) while private patients accounted for the remaining 19% of total discharges (22% of total in-patient bed days).
- Medical card holders accounted for 54% of total discharges.
- Almost one-third of total discharges were aged 65 years and older, an increase of 5% between 2009 and 2010 and a mean increase of 5.6% between 2006 and 2010. This age group also used the highest proportion of in-patient bed days (40%), an increase of almost 1% on the 2009 figure.

Non-Maternity Discharges

- Excluding Maternity discharges, in-patients who stayed for more than 30 days accounted for 3% of in-patient discharges and 32% of in-patient bed days.
- The mean length of stay for acute in-patient discharges (excl. Maternity) was 4.9 days. This varied by hospital type as voluntary hospitals recorded a mean length of stay of 5.8 days for acute in-patient discharges (excl. Maternity) compared to 4.4 days reported for county hospitals.

Maternity Discharges

- 72,675 women gave birth in acute public hospitals reporting to HIPE in 2010.
- Normal (non-instrumental) deliveries accounted for almost six in every ten deliveries, followed by Caesarean section at 26%. Instrumental deliveries accounted for the remainder.
- Almost 24% of women who delivered and who were treated on a public basis had a Caesarean section. Of these Caesarean section deliveries, 44% were elective.
- Almost 35% of women who delivered and who were treated on a private basis had a Caesarean section. Of these Caesarean section deliveries, 60% were elective.

For further information please contact:

Prof. Miriam Wiley (Health Research and Information Division, ESRI), 087 226 7787 (mobile).


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