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Head of Healthcare Commission excised figures on excess deaths from Mid Staffordshire report

BMJ 2011; 342 doi: (Published 06 May 2011) Cite this as: BMJ 2011;342:d2900
  1. Clare Dyer
  1. 1BMJ

The last chairman of the Healthcare Commission removed figures showing that Stafford Hospital had between 400 and 1200 excess deaths between 2005 and 2008 from the commission’s final report into the hospital’s “appalling” standards of care, against the wishes of its author.

Ian Kennedy, who chaired the commission from its beginning until it was abolished in 2009, told the public inquiry into failings at Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust that he decided to excise the figures because people did not understand the statistical concept of “excess deaths.”

He said he took the action because of his experience a decade ago …

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