Publication of Surgeon Outcomes

Publication of surgeon-level information for orthopaedics first took place in 2013 as part of NHS England’s transparency measures, alongside nine other specialties, mainly surgical. The initiative was originally outlined in the NHS Commissioning Board’s planning document ‘Everyone Counts’; however, the publication at consultant level is now established as a requirement of the NHS Mandate. The Consultant Outcome Publication (COP) initiative is overseen by the Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership (HQIP).

From the first announcement of the initiative in December 2012, the BOA has been actively engaging in this initiative on behalf of its members, alongside the relevant orthopaedic specialist societies. We took the view that the new initiative demanded our active engagement and influence so that we could advise on the appropriate use and presentation of the data available. In this section of the website we provide further information on the initiative and our work in relation to it.

Consultant Outcome Publication – for orthopaedics

The orthopaedic data used for the publication comes from the National Joint Registry (NJR) and it covers hip, knee, ankle, shoulder and elbow replacement surgery. The information presented varies slightly for the different joint replacements; in all cases this includes descriptive information about practice, for example the number of procedures undertaken and the hospitals where the surgeon worked during the year, and for hips and knees it provides 90 day mortality information presented as a funnel plot.

The information is published at both surgeon and hospital level on a dedicated website: njrsurgeonhospitalprofile.org.uk. In addition, some of this information is also available at surgeon-level through the NHS Choices website: www.nhs.uk/Service-Search, which links to the full information on the dedicated site. The information is refreshed each year.

Consultant Outcome Publication – a BOA view

We believe our outcomes and standards in British Orthopaedics are second to none. The outcome publication initiative provides an opportunity to showcase our skills and professionalism. However, it is not without its challenges. In early 2015, the BOA President wrote to Prof Danny Keenan, Medical Director of HQIP, to outline the BOA’s view on the consultant outcome publication initiative, explaining that ultimately our view is that focusing on unit level, rather than the individual surgeon, is the appropriate level for publication. However, we recognise that at present the NHS Mandate requires publication for the individual surgeon and as such we continue to engage with this process on behalf of the profession.

More information
To find more information about which surgeons are included and checking your data, visit our FAQ section.
Information regarding each year of the initiative can be found using the links below.