December 13, 2012—Fewer people are dying in Canada’s acute care facilities after admission, according to the latest hospital mortality data from the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI).
The hospital standardized mortality ratio (HSMR) compares the number of deaths in a hospital with the 2009–2010 national average (after adjusting for differences in the types of patients in a facility), which is represented by the number 100. A score greater than 100 suggests an above-average rate, while a score lower than 100 suggests a below-average rate.
The HSMR is a performance indicator that hospitals in Canada have been using for many years to monitor changes over time and identify areas for improvement.
The data shows that patient care and quality are improving across the country. The HSMR decreased for 16% of participating hospitals outside Quebec in 2011–2012, compared with 2010–2011. Of these 82 facilities
Quebec data was included in the HSMR for the first time this year. Four years of data for Quebec regions and facilities have been provided, with 2010–2011 being the latest year available.
The inclusion of Quebec facilities and a revised method of calculating HSMRs means that this
year’s results paint the most accurate picture yet of hospital mortality in Canada and are as useful
as possible to hospitals.