The nannying fussbuckets of this world throw NHS stastistics around like confetti in justification for their bans, restrictions and campaigns. It appears that the key data - hospital coding - is pretty rubbish. Here's Nigel Hawkes from Straight Statistics:
But a letter in this week’s BMJ indicates that any confidence in the accuracy of codes may be misplaced. A team from Imperial College found that in 2009-10, nearly 20,000 adults were coded as having attended paediatric outpatient services, and 3,000 patients under 19 were apparently treated in geriatric clinics.
Pretty strange but no as odd as this:
Even more striking, between 15,000 and 20,000 men have been admitted to obstetric wards each year since 2003, and almost 10,000 to gynaecology wards. Nearly 20,000 midwife “episodes” – NHS jargon for completed treatments – were with men.
So next time you hear so doctor or representative of a New Puritan fake charity going on about hospital admissions - add salt!