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Little evidence to support hospital at night pilot

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There is no clear evidence to show that the NHS Hospital at Night programme has had an effect on the ways hospitals operate, according to a new report.

The study, ‘The case for Hospital at Night - The search for evidence’, conducted by the Skills for Health-Workforce Projects Team using data analysed by the NHS Information Centre assessed the impact and trends of the programme 22 hospital trusts.

Gerry Bolger, senior project manager told NT that although there were some positive trends it was not possible to say if these have been as a direct result of the programme.

‘What we have been able to conclude is that the programme has not made the situation in hospitals any worse,’ he said. He admitted that the survey results ‘raise as many questions as they answer’.

However, the survey has shown some positive trends. These include a reduction in patient deaths within 48 hours of admission to hospital, lower than the position across England; a reduction in the proportion of patients transferred to external hospitals; and a reduction in hospital standardised mortality ratio.

The survey concluded that ‘in spite of limited data and evidence available Hospital at Night is implemented there appears to be no detrimental effect to patient outcomes and efficiency’.

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