Emergency operation outcomes praised in new report

Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge is one of four in England and Wales with the lowest death rate following a specialist emergency procedure, says a new report.

Justin Davies

An emergency laparotomy is a major operation that involves opening the abdomen so the surgeon can view the organs and repair problems.

These commonly include infections due to a perforated or inflamed bowel, a blockage to the bowel, or internal bleeding. Other issues include infections in the gall bladder, strangulated hernias, and emergency surgery for bowel cancer.

The annual National Emergency Laparotomy Audit (NELA) gathered data from 176 hospitals in England and Wales.

Addenbrooke’s, which is part of Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, had a caseload of 244 patients and a risk adjusted 30 day mortality rate of 5.32 per cent – among the lowest in the country.

CUH deputy medical director and consultant colorectal surgeon, Justin Davies (pictured), said: “The audit result is a real testament to the teams involved, and vindicates the approach we have taken over the last six years to develop emergency specialists within general surgery.

“It also recognises the expertise of our theatre, anaesthetic and critical care colleagues, as well as the outstanding nursing and teams of Allied Health Professionals who help these patients in their treatment and recovery.

“We will not be resting on our laurels though, as we are committed to continually improving our skills and outcomes for patients.”

The NELA aims to enable the improvement of patient care undergoing emergency laparotomy through the provision of high quality comparative data from providers. Others that are top of the table for low mortality are Gloucestershire Royal Hospital, Salford Royal Hospital and Steppingly Hill Hospital.

The report said: “These hospitals have some of the best outcomes in England and Wales. The hope is that collaborative learning events will provide opportunities for hospital teams to learn from one another and share how improved outcomes for patients can be sustained.”

To learn more about the National Emergency Laparotomy Audit December 2018 to November 2019 visit https://www.nela.org.uk/NELA_home


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