Letters Cardiac surgery mortality rates

Maintaining registers that provide reliable and valid information is not easy

BMJ 2013; 346 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.f1969 (Published 02 April 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;346:f1969
  1. Richard Smith, consultant ophthalmologist1,
  2. Robert Johnston, consultant ophthalmologist2
  1. 1Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust, Stoke Mandeville Hospital, Aylesbury HP21 8AL, UK
  2. 2Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Trust, Cheltenham, UK
  1. richard.smith{at}doctors.org.uk

In publishing risk adjusted mortality rates by hospital and surgeon, the Society for Cardiothoracic Surgeons in Great Britain and Ireland sets a standard to which other surgical specialties should aspire.1 However, careful statistical analysis is needed for valid comparisons between hospitals or surgeons, even for a binary outcome such as death. The analysis will lose the confidence of surgeons and …

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