Publishing data on patient survival does not deter surgeons from taking difficult cases

BMJ 2008; 337 doi: (Published 30 June 2008) Cite this as: BMJ 2008;337:a583
  1. Adrian O’Dowd
  1. 1Margate

    Surgeons are taking on more high risk heart operations despite fears that publishing data on survival rates would deter them.

    The latest heart surgery survival rates for the United Kingdom have been published by the NHS watchdog, the Healthcare Commission, and show continuing high rates of survival as well as numbers of operations for high risk patients that have risen since figures were first published, for the year 2004-5.

    The commission said that it was pleased that initial fears that publishing data would deter surgeons from performing as many risky operations had proved unfounded.

    The statistics are published on the commission’s cardiac website, …

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