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Hospital under scrutiny after high death rates among heart patients

A large hospital has been put under weekly review by the CQC (Care Quality Commission) after data, reported by the hospital to the society of Cardiothoracic Surgeons, reveal high death for patients who have undergone heart surgery.

The hospital claims the data is misleading as it has experienced a cluster of deaths as a result of a reporting issue with one individual surgeon who has since been removed from the hospital. The trust also feels that, if all the private operations at the hospital were taken into consideration, the data then they would fall within average guidelines.

The data revealed that of the 1,713 heart operations carried out, 77 patients died equating to a survival rate of 95.54%. However the CQC’s report maintains the need for a weekly review for the “foreseeable future” because, even with the surgeon removed from duty, a CQC chief inspector said: “Our inspectors found significant concerns particularly with regard to the safety, effectiveness and responsiveness of the service” .

The Royal College of Surgeons is also conducting a review using an independent team to help determine what improvements may be needed.

The trust commented saying they had, “taken action as early as June 2013 when internal data identified a cluster of deaths between September 2011 and September 2012 related to one surgeon”.

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