House of Commons Library

Accident and Emergency Statistics

Published Friday, July 17, 2015

What statistics are available on Accident & Emergency facilities in the UK and what do they show? This note provides summaries and visualisations of a wide range of NHS A&E trends, including: levels of attendance over time; attendance by age, and various measures of waiting times.

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What statistics are available on Accident & Emergency facilities in the UK and what do they show? There are several sources providing data on attendance and performance at NHS and independent sector A&E departments. This note provides summaries and visualisations of a wide range of A&E trends, including: levels of attendance over time; attendance by age, time and day of the week; various measures of waiting times; and reason for attendance. It also explores the extent and limitations of the available data sources.

A summary of data for England follows:

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There were an average of 5,100 more A&E attendances each day in 2014/15 than in 2009/10: a 9% increase. There were an average of 1,600 more emergency admissions to hospital via A&E in 2014/15 than in 2009/10: an 18% increase. In 2014/15, 6.4% of attendees spent more than 4 hours in A&E. In 2009/10 the figure was 1.7%. Between October 2014 and March 2015, 11.7% of attendees at major hospital A&E departments spent longer than 4 hours in the department.

Relative to population size, older people are most likely to attend A&E. Among working age people, however, those in their twenties are most likely to attend. Monday is the busiest day at A&E in terms of raw attendance numbers, with 17% more attendances than Friday.

Data is presented at a national level with some regional and provider-level summaries. Data for individual local providers or NHS area teams is available for many of the measures discussed here, and can be obtained by contacting the Library or consulting the sources referenced in this document.

Commons Briefing papers SN06964

Author: Carl Baker

Topics: Ambulance services, Emergency services, Health services

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