The COVID-19 Pandemic has had a huge impact on the treatment of long-term and chronic conditions, and we have seen a reduction in hospital activity for non-COVID related conditions.

From the HES data in Meditrends we can now start to really measure the impact on these services.

We can see from the HES data that nationally in January 2020 there were 5,510 admissions with a primary diagnosis of MS and that that figure dropped to just 3,140 admissions in April 2020. A reduction of 36% at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, during the period of full national lockdown.

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The number of admissions for this cohort of patients increased slightly in May 2020 to 3,390 and by July the number had increased to 4,895. A significant increase from April but numbers had still not returned to the same level as pre-lockdown.

The decrease of patients with a diagnosis of MS in any diagnosis position is even more significant. In January 2020 there were 10,435 admissions of patients with a diagnosis of MS in any position and this decreased by 48% by April, when there were just 5,415 admissions for this cohort of patients.

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The number of admissions relating to this cohort of patients increased to 7,940 in July 2020, but this is still 24% less than the number of admissions in January – before the COVID-19 pandemic began.

Mortality:

COVID-19 is stated as the second highest cause of death in patients admitted with a primary diagnosis of MS in the last 5 years, with a total of 65 deaths attributed to the U071 ICD10 code- the emergency code used for COVID-19.

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For patients admitted with a diagnosis of MS in ‘any’ diagnosis position COVID-19 was the third highest cause of death, with 280 deaths recorded against ICD10 code U071 (COVID 19)

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Please note, due to the way MS is coded in HES, we are unable to differentiate between relapsing-remitting MS (RRMS), primary progressive MS (PPMS)  and secondary progressive MS (SPMS).

To find out more about the impact COVID-19 has had on patients with a diagnosis of MS – or to obtain similar insights relating to your disease or therapy area, please contact Sarah Brooks (Sarah.brooks@dice-comms.co.uk)

The COVID-19 Pandemic has had a huge impact on the treatment of long-term and chronic conditions, and oncology services in particular have suffered greatly.

From the HES data in Meditrends we can now start to really measure the impact of COVID-19 on hospital services. Over the coming weeks, using the insights Meditrends provides,  we will examine the impact of COVID-19 on hospital activity for a number of different therapy areas.

The following insights have been drawn from analyses presented in a Meditrends Therapy Area report on Prostate Cancer, based on more than 1 million NHS England hospital admissions among over 300,000 patients in the five years up to July 2020.

We can see from the graphs below that admissions for patients with a diagnosis of Prostate Cancer decreased significantly throughout the lockdown period; with just 4,175 admissions of patients with a primary diagnosis of Prostate Cancer in April 2020 and 4,070 in May, compared with 8,950 primary admissions in March 2020.

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Admissions began to increase again from June with 6,015 primary admissions, and there were 7,490 primary admissions in July, so although activity has begun to increase, we are still not seeing the same number of admissions as we were prior to lockdown. It is worth noting that June and July’s data will include incomplete admissions – where a patient was still in hospital at the end of July when the data was submitted. 

The reduction in admissions throughout April and May suggests that around 10,000 admissions were cancelled or postponed. One would expect that these admissions will need to be rescheduled and it will be interesting to see when these will be rescheduled for, especially in light of the new spike in COVID-19 cases and local tiered lockdowns in October 2020.

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We can also see from the data that the number of admissions of patients with Prostate Cancer in any diagnosis position has also dramatically decreased during the COVID-19 pandemic. In January 2020 there were 22,360 admissions for this patient cohort, reducing to just 10,445 admissions in April 2020. This figure was back up to 16,170 by the end of June – still 28% less than pre-pandemic.

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To find out more about the impact COVID-19 has had on patients with a diagnosis of Prostate Cancer – or to obtain similar insights relating to your disease or therapy area, please contact Sarah Brooks (Sarah.brooks@dice-comms.co.uk)


It’s been a challenging and interesting time for healthcare throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Now that the HES (Hospital Episode Statistics) data for the last quarter (up until the end of July 2020) has been released, we are able to assess the impact of COVID-19 on hospital activity and the treatment of chronic and long-term conditions and diseases. 

Using the clinical browsers available in Meditrends, we have uncovered some compelling insights from the latest HES data set. 


What does the data show? 

The total number of hospital admissions between July 2019 and July 2020 was 16.1 million – this is down 2.6 million compared to the previous year (July 2018 – July 2019), a reduction of 14%. Prior to COVID, admissions had been increasing by an average of 5% year on year. 

Both elective and non-elective admissions were affected throughout the peak of the pandemic. Non-elective admissions were down 10% from the previous year, while elective admissions saw a 17% reduction. 

These figures appear to correlate with a nationwide postponement of scheduled procedures due to the pandemic, as well as people avoiding hospitals through instruction or personal choice.

Hospital admissions peaked in April before seeing a sharp decline in June and July.

There were nearly 90,000 admissions in the 12-month period where the emergency ICD10 code for COVID was applied (U70). MAT (Moving Annual Total) admissions dropped from 18.7 million to 16.1 million between July 2019 and July 2020, a reduction of 14%. In-hospital deaths dropped 2% from 156,000 to 153,000, while deaths per thousand admissions increased from 16.2 to 18.4, an increase of 13%.

DICE Comms COVID


While COVID admissions rose dramatically (from 0 to 50,000 per month), the number of COVID admissions was relatively small in comparison to the decrease in overall admissions (more than 500,000). Since the number of COVID admissions has decreased almost back to zero, the number of admissions for all other conditions had not returned to a normal rate at the end of July.

Interestingly, although the number of COVID admissions reduced in June, admissions for other conditions, such as dementia, were still at a relatively low level at the end of July. It’s worth noting, however, that data provided for July does not include incomplete admissions, where a patient was still in hospital at the end of July. 

To find out more, and to understand how the COVID pandemic has impacted hospital activity in your disease/therapy area, please get in touch with sarah.brooks@dice-comms.co.uk

*Images taken from Meditrends