UK private hospital care outcomes published

Information on infections and health improvement post-surgery is now published, which will help patients considering UK private healthcare. It is the first time that information on health outcomes has been published for patients receiving privately funded care in the UK, covering both independent hospitals and NHS Private Patient Units.

The Private Healthcare Information Network (PHIN) has published information about health outcomes and risk of infections for privately funded patient healthcare in the UK.

PHIN is the independent, government-mandated source of information on privately funded healthcare in the UK. It is responsible for producing quality and safety data on privately funded healthcare in the UK, and for publishing performance measures.

98.8% of private patients treated either in an independent hospital or NHS Private Patient Unit reported improvement in their health following hip replacement surgery, while 95.3% of private patients reported improved health following private knee surgery.

Patients can also now get a clearer understanding of their risk of infection at 282 independent hospitals and NHS Private Patient Units, 85% of privately funded admitted patient care across the UK.

While it is not possible to draw a meaningful comparison between individual hospitals, PHIN has published a guide to help patients understand what infection rates at different hospitals could mean for their care along, with questions they should ask their care provider before treatment.The infections data for July 2018 to 30 June 2019 included:

  • 305 reported healthcare-associated infections across 1.4 million bed days of care. These are serious infections such as MRSA bacteremia.
  • E.coli is the most common infection with an overall rate of 9.3 in 100,000 bed days.
  • 58 reported surgical site infection (SSI) across 28,900 patients undergoing hip and knee replacement procedures. Privately funded patients having hip or knee replacement surgery had a 0.2% risk of developing an SSI.

Dr Andrew Vallance-Owen of PHIN said: “UK patients have access to better information about private healthcare, and can have more informed conversations with their consultant and hospital about both their likely outcomes, and their potential risk of developing an infection.”

PHIN’s publication of statistics on patient safety in private hospitals gives people access to useful information about the quality of services.