Hospital death rates ‘higher than expected’ in Sunderland

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HOSPITAL death rates in Sunderland were significantly higher than expected, latest figures show.

City Hospitals Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust is one of nine across England which has been flagged up by health watchdogs as having a higher than predicted mortality ratio.

For the year ending June 2014, 1771 deaths were expect for the Trust, which runs Sunderland Royal, but 2,020 deaths were recorded. This is 14 per cent more deaths than expected. The data is provided by the Summary Hospital-level Mortality Indicator, which has been gathered by the Health and Social Care Information Centre.

Ian Martin, the Trust’s medical director, says the data is only a crude indictor.

He said under-estimating the “expected” number of deaths in this way leads to an apparently high rate of death, which is misleading.