The figures – from NHS Wales Chief Executive David Sissling’s Annual Report which will be published this week – show emergency admissions for heart disease, respiratory conditions and diabetes fell by almost 12 per cent overall in 2011/12 compared to the previous year.
Emergency re-admissions for these conditions also fell by almost 23 per cent overall.
The new figures are published as health boards across Wales prepare to consult on plans to improve their services, and according to the NHS Wales Chief Executive, they help reinforce the need for new models of healthcare.
David Sissling said:
“The NHS has made significant strides in reducing hospital admissions for chronic conditions.
“These reductions illustrate two important developments – the improved treatment of once-fatal diseases through better care – often in community settings - and because of that, less reliance on hospitals for the treatment of these conditions.
“It shows the NHS is making progress in shifting the balance of care from hospital to community settings, and that the current hospital configuration – which exists from a time when these diseases were less treatable – can be changed to reflect these improved outcomes.
“Because of reduced admissions, many community hospitals are underutilised which is inefficient for both patients and the NHS.
“To continue to deliver better outcomes we need an even greater focus on community-based services – alongside specialist centres of excellence – which will provide better results for patients.
“In order to meet these challenges, we need to modernise our health services and over the coming months communities across Wales will get a chance to voice their opinions on changes to health services in their areas.