Increase in day cases at hospitals
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Patient statistics2003



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Increase in day cases at hospitals

The growth in activity at general hospitals was relatively large during 2003. The number of hospital stays increased by 42 000 and the number of day cases by more than 61 000 since 2002. Outpatient consultations grew by 176 500 cases.

The rise in the number of hospital stays was about 5.4 per cent in 2003. The total number of bed days just increased slightly, and that the average length of a hospital stay still is decreasing, from 5.7 in 2002 to 5.4 days in 2003. Day cases at policlinics and hospital wards have increased by almost 15 per cent. This is the largest growth since Statistics Norway started publishing day cases in 2000.

Health regions

From 1 January 2002, the government took over the responsibility for most of the specialist health services, and organizes the activities under 5 Regional Health Authorities (RHA). These authoritiesrun the state owned general hospitals, and also have agreements with private hospitals run by foundations. In addition, they buy services from private owned commercial hospitals.

Number of hospital stays, day cases and consultations, by Regional
Health Authority. 2003
Day cases
Day cases
Total  783 529     206 176     214 158     3 221 669
Eastern Norway RHA  230 777 48 006 68 465  991 412
Southern Norway RHA  189 958 70 778 50 575  722 154
Western Norway RHA  148 331 29 045 43 074  593 374
Central Norway RHA  107 573 23 117 31 055  526 069
Northern Norway RHA 82 676 24 963 20 527  388 660
Private hospitals without RHA agreement 24 214 10 267  462  


At general hospitals the number of outpatient consultations amounted to nearly 3 222 000 in 2003. This is an increase of approximately 176 500 consultations from the year before, or 5.8 per cent. The figures covers consultations in hospitals owned by the central government or hospitals that have an agreement with a Regional Health Authority (publicly financed hospitals). 6 836 consultations are excluded from the tables, which covers diagnosis (ICD-10), because the patients have foreign or unknown resident.

More women than men were treated in outpatient care, 56 per cent. For women, diseases in the musculoskeletal system were the most frequent cause for treatment, followed by tumors (mainly cancer) and injuries. Next to injury, diseases in the musculoskeletal system and cardiovascular diseases were the most usual cause for treatment for men. For children less then 10 years of age

injuries, diseases of the respiratory system and congenital malformations were the most common

main diagnosis.

1 out of 7 inpatient stays was caused by cardiovascular diseases. Tumors (mainly cancer) were the most common main diagnosis, and caused 10.6 per cent of all inpatient stays in 2003. Injury and poisoning were due to 10.4 per cent of all inpatient stays.

780 000 of all inpatient stays were treatment of patients living in Norway. For women, pregnancy, childbirth and the puerperium is the cause of most stays, 68 200 in 2003. Cardiovascular diseases were the most common main diagnosis for men and caused approximately 65 000 inpatient stays.

The proportion between emergency services and planned admissions were altered in direction of a small growth in planned treatments. In 2003 63 per cent of all hospital stays were acute care.