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Pleural Plaques

Volume 499: debated on Wednesday 11 November 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many people have been diagnosed with pleural plaques in (a) Jarrow constituency, (b) South Tyneside, (c) the north-east and (d) England in each year since 1997; (298064)

(2) how many people have required treatment for pleural plaques in (a) Jarrow constituency, (b) South Tyneside, (c) the north-east and (d) England in each year since 1997.

The only information available, relating to the number of in-patient admissions to hospital with a primary diagnosis of pleural plaques, is given in the following table. Information is given for the strategic health authority and primary care trust areas matching most closely those requested. Information on the number of people diagnosed with pleural plaques as a result of consultations in primary care or in hospital out-patient clinics is not available. In the great majority of cases pleural plaques result in no symptoms and do not require treatment.

Count of admissions1 into hospital where there was a primary diagnosis of pleural plaque2 in England, North East Strategic Health Authority of treatment4 and South Tyneside Primary Care Trust of responsibility3 from 1997-98 to 2008-09, activity in English NHS Hospitals and English NHS commissioned activity in the independent sector

England

North East Strategic Health Authority of treatment

South Tyneside Primary Care Trust of responsibility (5KG)

2008-09

646

47

*

2007-08

614

39

*

2006-07

570

34

*

2005-06

508

37

7

2004-05

433

31

6

2003-04

379

25

7

2002-03

357

22

*

2001-02

352

30

*

2000-01

337

22

*

1999-2000

283

26

*

1998-99

291

19

*

1997-98

245

*

*

Notes:

1Finished admission episodes

A finished admission episode is the first period of inpatient care under one consultant within one healthcare provider. Finished admission episodes are counted against the year in which the admission episode finishes. Please note that admissions do not represent the number of inpatients, as a person may have more than one admission within the year.

2Primary diagnosis

The primary diagnosis is the first of up to 20 (14 from 2002-03 to 2006-07 and seven prior to 2002-03) diagnosis fields in the HES data set and provides the main reason why the patient was admitted to hospital.

The IC10 diagnosis code for pleural plaque is 392.

3Primary Care Trust (PCT) of Responsibility

A derived field providing the primary care trust responsible for the patient. Commissioning responsibility for individual patients rests with the PCT with whom the patient is registered. This means that patients with a GP in one PCT area may reside in a neighbouring or other area but remain the responsibility of the PCT with whom their GP of registration is associated. PCTs are also responsible for non-registered patients who are resident within their boundaries.

4Strategic Health Authority (SHA) of Treatment

This field is derived from the hospital provider code (procode). It indicates the SHA area within which the treatment took place.

Small numbers

To protect patient confidentiality, figures between 1 and 5 have been suppressed and replaced with “*” (an asterisk). Where it was possible to identify numbers from the total due to a single suppressed number in a row or column, an additional number (the next smallest) has been suppressed.

Data quality

HES are compiled from data sent by more than 300 NHS trusts and PCTs in England. Data is also received from a number of independent sector organisations for activity commissioned by the English NHS. The NHS Information Centre for health and social care liaises closely with these organisations to encourage submission of complete and valid data and seeks to minimise inaccuracies and the effect of missing and invalid data via HES processes. While this brings about improvement over time, some shortcomings remain.

Assessing growth through time

HES figures are available from 1989-90 onwards. The quality and coverage of the data have improved over time. These improvements in information submitted by the NHS have been particularly marked in the earlier years and need to be borne in mind when analysing time series. Some of the increase in figures for later years (particularly 2006-07 onwards) may be due to the improvement in the coverage of independent sector activity. Changes in NHS practice also need to be borne in mind when analysing time series. For example, a number of procedures may now be undertaken in outpatient settings and may no longer be accounted for in the HES data. This may account for any reductions in activity over time.

Source:

Hospital Episode Statistics (HES), The NHS Information Centre for health and social care