GPs in Scotland to be freed from QOF

BBC News reported 1st October 2015: ‘Outdated’ QOF GP payment system scrapped in Scotland

Royalty-Free (RF) Clipart Illustration of a Denim Blue Man Jumping For Joy While Breaking Away From a Ball and Chain, Symbolizing Freedom From Debt Or Divorce by Leo Blanchette

GP payment system which gave surgeries money for achieving a list of outcomes is to be scrapped in Scotland.

Health Secretary Shona Robison made the announcement at a conference in Glasgow attended by about 2000 doctors.

The Qualifty and Outcomes Framework (QOF) makes payments based on an itemised list of services but has been criticised as too bureaucratic.

The doctors organisation BMA Scotland welcomed the move, saying it could reinvigorate general practice.

In her speech, Ms Robison said officials would work with the BMA to dismantle the QOF system by 2016, before a new GP contract begins the following year.

She also promised that the Scottish government would not cut junior doctors’ pay.

She told the Royal College of General Practitioners annual conference: “I have always said I want to work with GPs in addressing the problems faced by the profession.

“Today I have announced that we will begin discussions to remove the outdated QOF system of payments for GPs, which I know many in the profession find bureaucratic and time-consuming.

“I have also given the conference a cast iron guarantee that we will not be following the UK Government’s plans to cut junior doctors’ pay. I know that the RCGP are particularly concerned the proposals and the growing confusion and alarm that this is causing trainees.”

Dr Alan McDevitt, chairman of the BMA’s Scottish GP committee, said the announcement was a “significant” step forward.

“This bold move by the cabinet secretary is part of the re-invigoration of general practice in Scotland,” he said.

“It will have a positive effect on practices, by reducing workload and bureaucracy, allowing GPs to focus on the complex care needs of their patients.

“We believe that moving to a professionally driven, peer referenced system of quality will ensure that general practice and the NHS in Scotland continues to deliver a high standard of care to its patients.”

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This entry was posted in A Personal View, Stories in the Media on by .

About Roger Burns - retired GP

I am a retired GP and medical educator. I have supported patient participation throughout my career, and my practice, St Thomas; Surgery, has had a longstanding and active Patient Participation Group (PPG). I support the idea of Community Health Councils, although I feel they should be funded at arms length from government. I have taught GP trainees for 30 years, and been a Programme Director for GP training in Pembrokeshire 20 years. I served on the Pembrokeshire LHG and LHB for a total of 10 years. I completed an MBA in 1996, and I along with most others, never had an exit interview from any job in the NHS! I completed an MBA in 1996, and was a runner up for the Adam Smith prize for economy and efficiency in government in that year. This was owing to a suggestion (St Thomas' Mutual) that practices had incentives for saving by being allowed to buy rationed out services in the following year.

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