National Audit of Hospital Mortality Annual Report 2020

This is the sixth National Audit of Hospital Mortality Annual Report. The data in the National Quality Assurance Improvement System, National Audit of Hospital Mortality (NQAIS NAHM) web-based tool are extracted from the Hospital In-Patient Enquiry (HIPE) scheme records in 44 participating publicly funded acute hospitals nationally. Thirty hospitals have met the inclusion criteria to have their data included in the 2020 publication.

National Audit of Hospital Mortality Annual Report 2020

The NAHM Annual Report 2020 presents standardised mortality ratios (SMR) for six medical conditions1: acute myocardial infarction (AMI) / heart attack, heart failure, ischaemic stroke, haemorrhagic stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and pneumonia. NAHM uses data from 44 publicly funded hospitals in Ireland, with 30 hospitals meeting the criteria for inclusion in this report. All hospitals were within expected ranges for the included medical conditions.

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Key Findings

Analysis of the NAHM data shows that there was a reduction in the number of cases admitted for in-hospital treatment in acute hospitals in 2020 compared with 2019. These reductions were anecdotally found to be due to people’s reluctance to go to a hospital for fear that they would contract coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) while there. There has been a rise in the crude mortality rate in the respiratory diagnoses included in this report, particularly for pneumonia, despite the decreased number of overall cases, and this rise can be directly attributed to COVID-19.

Supporting Appendix 2020

The main report is supported by the National Audit of Hospital Mortality Supporting Appendix 2020. The Supporting Appendix contains information on risk methodology, the NAHM Governance Committee, and supporting tables for the main report’s funnel plots.

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Key Recommendations

  • There are no recommendations included in this report. Recommendations arising from the independent review of NAHM will be developed based on the findings from the review and will be published as part of the NAHM Annual Report 2021.