A Birmingham hospital trust has been ranked as the second worst in the country for patient deaths following surgery, according to a new study.
University Hospital Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust (UHBFT) recorded higher than expected levels of deaths over the past year, in two measures used by the Dr Foster Intelligence Hospital Guide.
But bosses at the trust, which runs the new Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham, said the findings are wrong and grossly misleading.
The study claims the first time that the independent healthcare survey has monitored the number of patients who have died following surgery.
And it claims that the death rate at UHBFT was 57 per cent above average.
It also recorded that the general death rate, referred to in the report as the Hospital Standardised Mortality Ratio (HSMR), was nine per cent above average.
The survey also claims that four other regional trusts – The Royal Wolverhampton Hospitals NHS Trust, George Eliot Hospital NHS Trust, The Dudley Group of Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust – recorded a higher than expected HSMR rate.
But the controversy-hit Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust, currently the subject of a public inquiry, has seen mortality rates fall to below average over the last two years.
Roger Taylor, director of research at Dr Foster, said: “Mortality rates are just one indicator of hospital outcomes and should not be looked at in isolation.
“The hospital guide looks at 25 measures of hospital performance. However, where hospitals do have high mortality rates, it may indicate issues with standards of care.
“The figures should prompt hospital trusts to investigate the causes.”
Overall, the survey found that death rates in hospitals are decreasing, with just 19 of the 147 trusts investigated now recording significantly high HSMRs, compared with 27 last year.