An acute patient is one who requires immediate assessment or treatment.
An elective patient requires less urgent treatment and whose surgery (eg, hip replacement) can be scheduled for a future date.
The total numbers discharged from any given surgical service will not equal the total number of operations performed by that surgical service:
- Discharges from surgical services simply indicate that a patient passed through a surgical service and was discharged from that service. They do not have to receive an operation to be included in this dataset.
- If a patient undergoes more than one operation they are still only recorded as a single discharge.
- A number of patients receiving an operation will, after that operation, be transferred to a medical specialty, such as respiratory medicine, to receive further treatment before discharge. Such patients will then be counted as a medical discharge, even though as part of their course of treatment they received an operation.
Hospital surgical activity data applies only to patients receiving publicly funded surgical treatment.
Examples of surgical activity not included in this data:
- Procedures done on an outpatient basis, such as removal of melanoma, or those purchased as specific items, such as some minor eye operations.
- Investigative procedures, such as endoscopy or cardiac catheters.
- Emergency Department activity.
This dataset shows the number of people in the district health board (DHB) area who were discharged from surgical specialties. The information is split into acute and elective patients.
Method of collection/Data provider
Each DHB has a service agreement for a certain volume of activity with each of its surgical services. The volume of activity is measured in case weights. Case weights measure the relative complexity of the treatment given to the patient. This volume of activity is made up of both acute and elective cases. An acute case is one that has to be treated immediately.
The scope of activity included within a specific service agreement can vary between DHBs. For example, some DHBs have a separate service agreement for paediatric surgery; others include paediatric surgery within their general surgery service agreement.