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What is QOF?

The Quality Outcomes Framework also known as QOF comprised of 3 domains, is an integral system to resourcing and rewarding good practice and care to patients in general practices in the National Health Service. It has been deemed one of the world’s largest pay-for-performance incentive scheme in primary care. The three domains of QOF include:

  1. Clinical Domain
  2. Public Health Domain
  3. Quality Improvement Domain

The QOF also facilitates data collection and measurement of healthcare quality, essential for planning health services, addressing health inequalities, and ensuring efficient use of public investments. The QOF system has been reviewed for 2023-24 and changes has been put in place for it to become more streamlined and focused, cutting back by a quarter of indicators from 74 to 55.

NHS England have reported to state that “All QOF income for the registered indicators are to be protected and the funding will be paid to practices on a monthly basis based on their achievements and performance covering 2022/23.” The protected income element is said to be one of the big changes to the QOF model of 2023 to 2024, with 81 points out of a total of 635 QOF points, being subject to income protection. The value of 1 QOF point in 2023-24 equates to £213.43, this has increased from 2022/23 by £5.87 per point.

Clinical Rx® can help your practice meet its QOF requirements. Our team of pharmacists have the knowledge and experience to identify inefficiencies and help you fix them, which frees up your GPs and practice staff to focus on other tasks.

On average, our team has helped practices and PCNs find missed QOF coding and generate additional QOF income of £2,000 per thousand patients. Our service includes a bespoke set of searches that have been very successful in helping practices achieve their QOF targets.

We understand the heavy workload that general practitioners and their staff face. That’s why we offer to take some of that burden off your shoulders.

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What Are the Changes to 2023/2024 QOF indicators?

There has been the addition of new clinical indicators for 2023-24, these include:

  • Two new cholesterol indicators (CHOL001 and CHOL002) both of which are worth 30 points.
  • New main mental health indicator (MH021) which can be achieved based on the percentage of patients with serious mental illness and who have received all 6 aspects of a Physical Health Check
  • Atrial fibrillation indicator (AF008) which has been replaced by the old IIF indicator RA002, this was in relation to prescription of direct acting oral anticoagulant or where declined/clinically unsuitable, a vitamin K antagonist.

Workplace Wellbeing a Top Priority for QOF in New QI Modules

Another domain of QOF includes Quality Improvement, also known as QI. It is no surprise that mental and physical burnout amongst GPs and practice staff members has been exponentially rising and now the evidence of this has come to the forefront for action. With this in mind, further new QI modules that have been introduced to this financial year which includes:

  1. Workforce and wellbeing – two new indicators (QI013, QI014) have been introduced, designed to incentivise practices to “demonstrate continuous quality improvement activity focussed on workforce and wellbeing” and the participation in network activity to “regularly share and discuss learning” on this theme. These are worth 36 points together and it is understood that the introduction of this measure will help reduce the possibility of burnout and improve workplace wellbeing.
  2. Optimising demand and capacity in general practice – four new indicators have been introduced. Three (QI016-QI018) are focussed on encouraging practices to understand, act on, and share insights relating to capacity. QI019 has been introduced to incentivise a reduction in avoidable appointments.

With the abundance of clinical pharmacists, with the correct skills and competencies needed to systematically work towards achieving these clinical indicators, it is more than possible to hit the yearly QOF targets ahead of time.

Clinical Rx®: Reduce GP Workload and Boost QOF Income

Clinical Rx® provides a complete remote solution provided by our expert Clinical Pharmacists to support practice workflow and provide consistent support across the PCN. Our pharmacists will collaborate and work synergistically with your existing team to work through outstanding QOF alerts. We work tailored to each individual practice needs, with the aim to improve medication related inefficiencies, reduce GP workload, streamline clinical processes, and action drug monitoring.

At Clinical Rx®, our team of senior and junior pharmacists work together to identify those patients within a practice who can often “slip through the net”. These include patients who regularly attend the practice for appointments, have medications prescribed to manage their long-term conditions, but are not visible on clinical registers when outstanding QOF alert reports are run.

Incorrect coding or omissions in patient records can lead to several problems and can prevent practices from accurately reporting the care they provide.

  • Vulnerable patients may not be contacted for their annual long-term condition review.
  • Patients may not receive the review and monitoring they need.
  • Practices may not receive the correct amount of funding.

For example, meeting QOF targets for long term conditions like type 2 diabetes leads to lower mortality rates, reduced emergency hospital admissions, and improved health outcomes. By using the QOF effectively, the NHS can alleviate pressures on other healthcare sectors and improve patient well-being.

How Can Clinical Rx® Help?

Our team of pharmacists can help practices with QOF requirements. They can identify inefficiencies that are hindering practices from meeting their requirements, and then help to fix them. Clinical Pharmacists have the knowledge and experience to support GPs in ensuring that all patients on medications requiring routine monitoring is actioned. They can also conduct and code structured medication reviews, which covers a significant portion of the clinical domain of QOF. This frees up GPs and practice staff to focus on other tasks.

On average our team have helped practices and PCNs find missed QOF coding, generate additional QOF income, approximately £2000 per thousand patients. Our service includes a bespoke set of searches to help practices and PCNs achieve their QOF targets. These searches have been very successful and have helped to improve the quality of care for patients.

We at Clinical Rx® understand the heavy workload that general practitioners and their staff face. That’s why we offer to take some of that burden off your shoulders. We promise to deliver high-quality services that will help your practice run more efficiently and effectively, and we will work with you to achieve the best possible patient outcomes.

Contact us today to learn more about how we can help your practice.