Surgical outcomes 2014

The Association of Upper Gastro-Intestinal Surgeons (AUGIS) supports the publication of surgeons’ outcomes, and is committed to improving the range of information that is publicly available. Publishing outcome data will help patients to make informed decisions about their care and will support surgeons to continually assess and raise standards of surgery.

The individual surgeons’ results 2014 were taken from the National Oesophago-Gastric Cancer Audit (NOGCA) The audit, which started in 2006, was designed to look at the way hospital trusts and cancer networks manage patients with stomach or oesophageal cancer in England and Wales. It demonstrated steady improvement. Mortality rates are now lower than those reported when the audit started (2008-2010), with a decrease in 30 day mortality from 4.1% to 2.3% and a decrease in 90 day mortality from 6.5% to 4.5%.

This report details the number of operations individual surgeons have performed on patients diagnosed with stomach or oesophageal cancer between 1 April 2011 and 31 March 2013. We also publish adjusted 30 and 90-day postoperative mortality rates, as well as median length of stay, for individual surgeon and hospital trust.

Variations in adjusted post-operative outcomes for hospital units were examined using funnel plots (a widely used method to graphically present data) to show how hospitals outcomes compare to each other and the national rate.

In looking at this information, it is important to remember that the outcomes of NHS trusts and surgeons may vary because of factors such as the age, sex and number of other illnesses patients have – known as co-morbidities. Some surgeons might be operating on higher risk patients with other complex health needs like diabetes or respiratory problems.

The analysis showed that the 30 and 90-day postoperative mortality for all NHS Trusts and surgeons were within the range expected taking into account the variation in patients treated.