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Publication, Part of

Hospital Outpatient Activity, 2017-18

National statistics

National Statistics


This is a report on outpatient activity in English NHS hospitals and English NHS-commissioned activity in the independent sector. This annual publication covers the financial year ending March 2018. It contains final data and replaces the provisional data that are published each month.

The data are taken from the Hospital Episodes Statistics (HES) data warehouse. HES contains records of all admissions, appointments and attendances for patients admitted to NHS hospitals in England.

This publication includes analysis of more than 119 million outpatient appointments recorded in HES data during the 12 month period. A number of breakdowns are provided including by patient's age, gender, whether the appointment was attended or not and by provider. Note that this report counts the number of outpatient appointments rather than the number of patients.

The following additional analyses are included in this report for the first time:

• Outpatient Attendances by Index of Multiple Deprivation (IMD)

• Outpatient Attendances by Ethnic Category

The purpose of this publication is to inform and support strategic and policy-led processes for the benefit of patient care. This document will also be of interest to researchers, journalists and members of the public interested in NHS hospital activity in England.

Key Facts

Key Facts

•In 2017-18, there were 119.4 million outpatient appointments, of which 93.5 million were attended by patients.

•The number of outpatient appointments has nearly doubled since 2007-08, rising from 66.6 million appointments to 119.4 million in 2017-18

•The number of attended appointments has also risen significantly, from 54.4 million in 2007-08 to 93.5 million in 2017-18.

•Patients aged 60 to 79 years accounted for over 30 per cent (29.6 million) of all attendances.

Last edited: 12 October 2018 3:11 pm