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Response to publication of NICOR data

National Congenital Heart Disease Audit Report

Undertaken by NICOR (National Institute for Cardiovascular Outcomes Research)

This 3 year rolling audit collects data from all centres undertaking congenital cardiac surgery and interventional procedures in the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland (RoI). The audit focuses on monitoring activity levels and outcomes following cardiovascular procedures and the success of cardiovascular antenatal diagnostic screening.

Latest NICOR data (2012-2015 Report)

Published 4th April 2016

Dr Sean O'Kelly, Medical Director, University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust, commented:

"I am pleased to note that the latest independent report from NICOR, showing 30 day mortality data for the 73 major surgical and transcatheter cardiovascular interventions undertaken to treat congenital heart disease,confirms that Bristol continues to deliver good results for its patients across all the different interventions undertaken.

Mortality rates for children who have undergone heart operations or procedures continue to lie within the expected range, despite the increasing complexity of cases treated.

NICOR's Key findings

Patient outcomes

 Overall survival at 30-days following paediatric heart surgery was within the appropriate range for all specialist children's heart units (99.5% and 97.5% prediction limits).

 Overall survival at 30 days was analysed in 73 major surgical and transcatheter cardiovascular interventions undertaken to treat congenital heart disease at any age. In all hospitals 30 day survival was above the alert limit (98%) for all procedures with two exceptions.

Success of antenatal diagnosis

 Antenataldiagnosis of congenital heart disease has improved over the past 7 years. Between 2010-15 , almost 50% (n = 14,251) of infants who required a procedure to treat a congenital heart malformation in first year of life were diagnosed through antenatal screening, compared to less than a quarter of cases in 2004/5. This is as good as or better than diagnostic rates in North America.


 Monitoring patterns of activity and outcomes by centre is a key to ensuring procedures are undertaken by centres that offer specialist expertise. In 2014-15, UK and RoI centres submitted data on 8,216 specific procedures; 5,887 were paediatric cases and 2,329 were adult cases. A more detailed breakdown by centre and age group is available on the NCHDA portal

 The NCHDA does not currently publish data on the rarest procedures due to the very small numbers involved. The 2012-15 analysis of the most common procedures covers 86% of transcatheter and 81% of surgical procedures.