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Hospital stays²

Infograph EN B1

There are various types of hospital stays or hospital contacts. During a day hospitalisation, the patient comes to the hospital without spending the night there, unlike classic hospitalisation where the patient stays at least one night in the hospital and/or where a daily cost is charged. A stay via the emergency department may mean a contact without hospitalisation (hereinafter referred to as an "ambulatory contact with emergency department") as well as a contact followed by a hospitalisation (day or classic). In some cases, a patient stays several times during a year to have specific diseases treated (for example, for cancer chemotherapy) or due to various causes.

[2]Source of figures ‘Minimum Hospital Data (MZG in Dutch)’. The following types of stays were not included: non-terminated staysSource of figures ‘Minimum Hospital Data (MZG in Dutch)’. The following types of stays were not included: non-terminated stays(except the first period of a lengthy hospital stay , full psychiatric stays, stays of newborns which were not invoiced, stays for whichthe gender of the patient cannot be determined, stays in day hospitalisation for which a mini-fee or no fixed sum was charged.

 

Nursing care within the general hospital²

Nursing care in our Belgian hospitals is diverse. In an attempt to gain more insight into the reams of information with respect to nursing care, we try to divide the collection of care provided to the patient into 5 large groups of 'types' of nursing care. When we look at the care provided to the patient per moment in their stay at the hospital, we can immediately see that there are two large groups. The group with highly 'technical' care (about 10% of the nursing period) and a group where less technical care is provided, but a large variety of 'basic' care (the remaining 90%). The basic care can be described as nursing support in meeting the needs of general daily life (ADL treatment) such as assistance with food, assistance with hygienic care, assistance with travel, etc. Technical actions, on the other hand, are tasks ranging from taking a blood sample to patient ventilation.

If the care groups are arranged from basic care low to high-technical care, we would see that the number of nursing activities and the care burden in terms of the required competence of the nurse and the amount of time spent on this care are on the increase.

These five broad categories correspond more or less to the Nursing Related Groups (NRG). This is a grouping system that is used as a basis for funding surgical, internal and paediatric nursing care. You can find more information in this regard here.

Basis care – low (LB) Basis care – medium (MB)

Basis care – high (HB)

Technical care – medium and high (MT and MH)

This includes patients who are independent and receive only follow-up from a nurse.

Characteristic for the services maternity, rehabilitation, infectious diseases and in the services for diagnosis and treatment.

This includes patients who are accompanied in activities such as washing or eating.

Characteristic for the recovery room, the labour and delivery room and in the general services for diagnosis and treatment.

This includes patients who often receive complete assistance with, for example, washing, dressing and eating. The administration of more technical care is limited.

Characteristic of the services neonatology, geriatrics, paediatrics and palliative care units.

This type of care is mainly provided to young children and seniors.

This includes patients who are distinguished by the high number of technical care they receive. These patients receive a lot of medication, can be ventilated and are closely followed up by a nurse. Those patients receive often a lot of basis care too.

Characteristic of intensive care departments and burn centres

 

 

General characteristics:

  • Average age of patients between 73 and 94 years old.

Most characteristic nursing actions:

  • Care relating to urinary and faecal excretion
  • Care relating to mobility
  • Help with eating and/or drinking
  • Support in hygienic care
  • Prevention of bedsores

 

Most characteristic nursing actions that occur within this group:

  • Specific care post-partum (e.g. monitoring of uterine height, maternal flow, lactation, etc.)
  • Structured specific education (e.g. Education on breastfeeding, giving a baby bath, etc.)
  • Wound care on a suture (e.g. Episiotomy)

 

Most characteristic nursing actions that occur within this group:

  • Care relating to urinary and faecal excretion
  • Care relating to mobility: assistance in installing/moving patients
  • Follow-up of nutritional and moisture balance
  • Wound care on a suture or insertion point (e.g. umbilical stump)
  • Skin-to-skin contact
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[2] Source numerical data: MHD 2017

The most frequent diagnoses in general hospitals

The graph below shows the number of stays (classic and day hospitalisation combined) for theThe graph below shows the number of stays (classic and day hospitalisation combined) for theten main groups of diagnoses according to the ICD-10-CM classification1 for all ages. It should beborne in mind that during the same year, a patient may stay in hospital several times for the sameor different reasons.

With this in mind, digestive tract diseases top the list within this group dental, gastric and intestinalproblems as the most common diagnoses. Stays related to chemotherapy and immunotherapyare in 2nd position. Diseases of the nervous system are in 3rd position with the most frequentdiagnoses being chronic pain, sleep disorders or epilepsy.

A higher number of women than men are treated for disorders of the osteoarticular system; thisgender ratio is reversed for diseases of the circulatory system.

[1] Chapters of ICD-10-BE, taking into account only chemo- and immunotherapy for chapter XXI (62%). The other stays from this Chapters were not included in the analysis.