This is a publication on Accident and Emergency (A&E) activity in English NHS hospitals and English NHS-commissioned activity in the independent sector. This annual publication covers the financial year ending March 2021. It contains final data and replaces the provisional data that are published each month.
This is a joint publication between NHS Digital and NHS England. This collaboration enables data to be brought together from different sources enabling inclusion of a wider set of breakdowns and measures and a more complete picture to be presented.
The data sources for this publication are the Emergency Care Data Set (ECDS) for 2020-21, HES A&E for activity prior to 2020-21 and the A&E Attendances and Emergency Admissions Monthly Situation Reports (MSitAE). This is the first year this report has been produced using ECDS in its submitted format, replacing the use of Hospital Episode Statistics (HES). Further information is available in the Data Quality Statement.
The ECDS data set contains several new and additional reporting fields not previously available in HES A&E enabling new insights to be identified from data. Reported information based on these new splits and metrics presented within the report are presented as Experimental Statistics and should be used with caution. Experimental statistics are new official statistics undergoing evaluation.
They are published in order to involve users and stakeholders in their development and as a means to build in quality at an early stage. More information about experimental statistics can be found on the UK Statistics Authority website.
This publication releases some high level analyses of both ECDS/HES and MSitAE data relating to A&E attendances in NHS hospitals, minor injury units and walk-in centres. It includes analysis by patient demographics, time spent in A&E, distributions by time of arrival and day of week, arriving by ambulance, performance times, waits for admission and re-attendances to A&E within 7 days.
The following additional analyses are also included in this report:
• Comparison of 4 hour and 12 hour waits between the four home nations, England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales
• A&E attendances by Index of Multiple Deprivation (IMD)
• A&E attendances by ethnicity
• Weekly variation in attendance activity during the pandemic, by department type