Inadequate data mean UK nations are failing to learn from each other

BMJ 2009; 338 doi: (Published 26 May 2009) Cite this as: BMJ 2009;338:b2128
  1. Oona Mashta
  1. 1London

    Comparative NHS healthcare data from the four nations of the United Kingdom have been lacking since devolution, the NHS Confederation (the representative body for NHS organisations) said this week.

    As a result valuable opportunities for mutual learning in the health systems of England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland are being lost, the confederation believes.

    It said: “We should attempt to learn from the experiment taking place in our own backyard. Studies comparing patients’ experience in the four UK nations are remarkably scarce, and statistics are rarely published in a comparable form, yet these studies are an unprecedented opportunity to learn what happens when policy approaches diverge—an opportunity not to be missed.”

    It believes that …

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