Seven geographical areas were selected for comparison. There were three health authorities (Barking & Havering, Bexley & Greenwich and Redbridge & Waltham Forest) and four local boroughs (Bexley, Greenwich, Lewisham and Dartford & Gravesham) The data was from the RES database for two years (1997/98 and 1998/99) and was extracted for both admissions and finished consultant episodes (FCEs). Four types of rates were produced crude, age-standardised, needs weighted and age & needs weighted. All rates are per thousand population. Rates were produced for seven specialty groups -surgical, other surgical, medicine, paediatric medicine, other medicine, obstetrics & gynaecology, and mental health (see Appendix Table I). There were also rates produced for two levels of grouping -Acute (total of fIrst six specialty groups) and Acute & Mental total of all specialty groups
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