Skip to main content
National Statistics

Hospital Outpatient Activity - 2012-13

This is part of

Official statistics, National statistics
Publication Date:
Geographic Coverage:
Geographical Granularity:
Country, Strategic Health Authorities, NHS Trusts, Primary Care Organisations, Hospital Trusts
Date Range:
01 Apr 2012 to 31 Mar 2013


For the 2012-13 financial year, Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) has collected 94 million records detailing outpatient appointments by NHS hospitals in England or performed in the independent sector, and commissioned by the English NHS.


Outpatient HES data was collected for the first time in 2003-04. The Health and Social Care Information Centre first released outpatient data at the end of July 2006 and the data was originally released on an 'experimental' basis. Since then, the experimental label has been removed and in 2008 the outpatient published tables were accredited as a National Statistic. This means the data within these specific tables has been produced in accordance with the 'Code of Practice for Official Statistics'. 


For the fourth year we have produced provider-level analyses, to contribute to the improvement of both the quality and coverage of outpatient data submitted to HES. It is hoped this will stimulate discussion and ultimately contribute to enhancements in patient care.


To fully realise the advantages, the quality and coverage of the HES outpatient data needs to be improved with the support of providers throughout England.  Provider-level information is available in the supporting Excel document, 'NHS Outpatient Statistics: Provider Level Analysis, 2011-12 to 2012-13'. This presents information at national, strategic health authority, hospital provider (where submitted) relating to:


- type of attendance and sex
- type of attendance
- attendances by age

- non-attendances by age
- first attendances by source of referral

- first attendance by outcome
- first attendances from patients referred by General Medical and Dental Practitioners by time waited
- selected main specialties    

Key Facts

• In 2012-13 there were 94.1 million outpatient appointments, of which 75.5 million (80.2 per cent) were attended.

• 6.9 million appointments (7.3 per cent) were not attended.

• First appointments accounted for 22.7 million attendances (30.1% of all attendances), of which 11.6 million (51.2 per cent) were referred from a General Medical Practitioner.

• Following first attendances, 32.0 per cent (7.3 million) were discharged (last attendance), 33.2 per cent (7.5 million) booked a follow up appointment and 33.6 per cent (7.6 million) were to be given a follow up appointment at a later date.

• The main consultant specialties with the most attendances were Allied Health Professional Episodes (7.5 million; 9.9 per cent), Trauma & Orthopaedics (7.1 million; 9.3 per cent), Ophthalmology (6.4 million; 8.5 per cent) and Nursing Episode (4.7 million; 6.3 per cent) which together made up just over a third (34.0 per cent) of all attendances.


Related Links

Last edited: 18 February 2019 9:57 am