Skip to main content

Clostridium Difficile

Volume 450: debated on Wednesday 11 October 2006

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement on the outcome of the study conducted by the Office of National Statistics and the Health Protection Agency to identify the total number of deaths where Clostridium difficile was mentioned on the death certificate. (89862)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician who has been asked to reply.

Letter from Karen Dunnell, dated 9 October 2006:

As National Statistician I have been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question asking for a statement on the outcome of the study conducted by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) and the Health Protection Agency to identity the total number of deaths where Clostridium difficile was mentioned on the death certificate. (89862)

This study has now been completed and special analyses of deaths involving Clostridium difficile are undertaken annually by ONS for England and Wales. The results are published in Health Statistics Quarterly (HSO). The latest year for which such figures are available is 2004. Information on the numbers of deaths between 1999 and 2004 involving Clostridium difficile was published in HSO 30 in May 2006.! Please see also the replies to two other related questions you have asked.

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many death certificates in England and Wales in (a) 2003, (b) 2004 and (c) 2005 (i) mentioned Clostridium difficile and (ii) listed Clostridium difficile as the underlying cause of death; and if he will make a statement. (89860)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician who has been asked to reply.

Letter from Karen Dunnell, dated 9 October 2006:

As National Statistician I have been asked to reply to your Parliamentary Question asking how many death certificates in England and Wales in (a) 2003, (b) 2004 and (c) 2005 (i) mentioned Clostridium difficile and (ii) listed Clostridium difficile as the underlying cause of death. (89860)

Special analyses of deaths involving Clostridium difficile are undertaken annually by ONS for England and Wales. These are published in Health Statistics Quarterly. The latest year for which such figures are available is 2004. Information on the numbers of deaths between 1999 and 2004 involving Clostridium difficile was published in “Health Statistics Quarterly” 30 in May 2006. The table below is extracted from this report:

Number of death certificates in England and Wales1 which (i) mentioned Clostridium difficile2 and (ii) listed Clostridium difficile as the underlying cause of death3 in 2003 and 20044

(a) 2003

(b) 2004

(i) Certificates mentioning Clostridium difficile

1,788

2,247

(ii) Certificates where Clostridium difficile was the underlying cause of death

958

1,245

1 Data includes non-residents who died in England and Wales 2 Identified using the methodology described in Office for National Statistics (2005) Report: Deaths involving Clostridium difficile England and Wales. 1999-2004. “Health Statistics Quarterly” 30, 56-60. 3 Excludes neonatal deaths 4 Deaths occurring in 2003 and 2004

To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer in how many and what proportion of deaths (a) clostridium difficile and (b) MRSA was recorded as a contributory factor in each year since 2002, broken down by hospital. (90344)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the National Statistician, who has been asked to reply.

Letter from Karen Dunnell, dated 9 October 2006

AsNational Statistician I have been asked to reply to your recent Parliamentary Question asking in how many and what proportion of deaths (a) Clostridium difficile and (b) MRSA was recorded as a contributory factor in each year since 2002, broken down by hospital. (90344)

Special analyses of deaths involving Clostridium difficile and MRSA are undertaken annually by ONS for England and Wales. The results are published in Health Statistics Quarterly (HSQ). The latest year for which such figures are available is 2004. Information on the numbers of deaths between 1999 and 2004 involving Clostridium difficile was published in HSQ 30 in May 20061. Information on the number of deaths between 2000 and 2004 involving MRSA was published in HSQ 29 in February 20062.

The number of deaths in NHS Hospitals where Clostridium difficile was a contributory factor in the years 2001 to 2004 was 6,168 out of a total of 1,178,776 deaths in NHS Hospitals. This represents 0.5 per cent of all deaths in NHS Hospitals between 2001 and 2004. The number of deaths in NHS Hospitals where MRSA was a contributory factor in the years 2000 to 2004 was 3,830 out of a total of 1,467,116 deaths in NHS Hospitals. This represents 0.2 per cent of all deaths in NHS Hospitals between 2000 and 2004.

A breakdown of the figures for Clostridium difficile and MRSA by individual hospital could only be provided at disproportionate cost.