Linking ONS and HES creates a richer dataset which captures deaths of people who have been treated in English hospitals, irrespective of whether they died in hospital or not. Combining the data in HES and ONS datasets provides additional valuable information such as cause of death, deaths outside of hospital etc. which is not available in HES. This data can be used for a wide range of analyses, e.g. long-term follow-up on survival rates. Metadata on fields available in this dataset is available in the HES-ONS linked mortality data dictionary in 'User Documents' section in the HES data dictionary page.
HES-ONS linked mortality data guide
Summary of deaths following admission or primary procedure
This analysis was published as a HES 'Topic of Interest' in December 2014. Using the linked HES-ONS mortality data, deaths both in and outside of hospital following hospital admission or primary procedure have been calculated. Detailed data on aggregated counts of deaths within 30, 60 and 90 days by primary procedure and primary diagnosis are available for HES data years 1997-98 to 2013-14 and is available alongside the December 2014 HES publication.
These tables contain data for patients who had been treated in hospital in this period and subsequently died within 30, 60 or 90 days of the admission/procedure. The procedures table contains aggregated counts by primary procedures and the diagnosis table contains aggregated counts by primary diagnosis at admission.
It is to be noted that high percentages/counts of deaths after admissions/procedures do not necessarily imply an issue. The numbers should be considered in the context of the total number of patients with the condition and the nature of the condition as the health of some patients prior to entering hospital and prognosis will be expected to be poor simply due the condition they are suffering from.
The unadjusted data can be used as a starting point for more detailed clinical analysis. It highlights the dataset as a valuable and rich source of information for gaining a greater insight into outcomes of patients. However, unadjusted data such as these are not recommended for comparing organisations' death rates for example, some organisations treat sicker patients who are more likely to die whether or not they enter hospital. For this purpose, standardised data enables a fairer comparison. A review into the methodology for provider level mortality rates is available in the SHMI web page.
Accessing the data
To request data extracts and for further information, please visit the Data Access Request Service.