Accident and Emergency Attendances in England - 2011-12, Experimental statistics
This is the 5th annual publication of the Accident and Emergency (A&E) Attendance data within Hospital Episodes Statistics (HES). It covers the period April 2011 to March 2012 and draws on just under 18 million detailed records of attendances at major A&E departments, single specialty A&E departments, minor injuries units and walk-in centres in England.
Publishing the A&E HES data as experimental statistics enables initial conclusions to be presented for discussion and aims to promote and highlight the uses of this potentially rich data set. During the period covered by this publication, not all providers have completed data submissions and data quality is poor in some cases.
The publication also includes analysis of the A&E HES data compared to the Department of Health Weekly Situation Reports (Sit Reps), the official source of A&E information, to highlight areas for further investigation.
NHS organisations can review their own data to ascertain the extent to which their local trend follows the national pattern. This can be done by using the accompanying interactive provider-level analysis file.
· There were 17.6 million accident and emergency attendances recorded at major A&E departments, single specialty A&E departments, walk-in centres and minor injury units in England; an increase of 8.5 per cent from 2010-11.
· Data is incomplete; there are 17.3 million attendances reported in A&E HES (excluding planned follow-up attendances), compared to 21.5 million reported in the Department of Health’s Weekly A&E situation reports (Sit Reps) aggregate data for the equivalent period.
· There are 200 providers with attendances recorded in A&E HES compared to 273 providers who have submitted A&E attendances via Weekly A&E Sit Reps. Weekly A&E Sit Reps has seen an increase in the number of walk in centres and minor injury units, some of which do not currently submit data to HES.
· Of the 73 providers that do not submit A&E data to HES, 33 are primary care trusts (PCTs), 10 are trusts, 2 are care trusts and 28 are other (including walk in centres, minor injury units and private providers)1.
· 43.4 per cent (7.7 million) of all A&E attendances were for patients aged 29 or under, 16.3 per cent (2.9 million) were for patients aged 20-29. Just over half of all A&E attendances (50.5 per cent) were male.
· 24.2 per cent (4.3 million) of all arrivals at A&E were by ambulance or helicopter, compared to 25.8 per cent (4.2 million) of all arrivals in 2010-11.
· 62.6 per cent (11.0 million) of all attendances at A&E had a valid diagnosis code and 13.4 per cent (2.4 million) of all attendances had a diagnosis of ‘Diagnosis not classifiable’ recorded.
· 92.9 per cent (16.4 million) of all attendances had a valid treatment code, an 18.2 percentage point increase from 2010-11. 34.4 per cent (6.1 million) of all attendances had a recorded treatment of ‘guidance/advice only’.
· 58.4 per cent (10.3 million) of all attendances were discharged (‘GP follow-up required’ or ‘no follow-up required’) and 20.7 per cent (3.7 million) of all attendances were admitted to hospital.
 Due to some providers submitting data to both A&E HES and Weekly A&E Sit Reps at different levels of aggregation in 2011-12, the provider counts have been consolidated to the 3 character provider code level. This has been done to allow comparison between the two data collections.
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