Care home patients lose out under QOF, study suggests

GPs' achievement of QOF points in chronic disease indicators is poorer among patients living in care homes than for those in the community, UK research suggests.

Researchers led by Dr Sunil Shah from the University of London found GPs were more likely to exception-report care home residents from QOF indicators than those in the community. Writing in the BMJ, the researchers called for QOF to include more measures relevant to care home patients.

The team analysed records from 326 general practices in the UK. They identified over 10,000 patients in care homes and over 400,000 in the community, all aged 65-104. They found points achieved by practices in 14 out of 16 indicators relating to chronic illness were lower for residents of care homes than for those in the community.

Prescribing in heart disease and monitoring of diabetes were among the largest differences between the two patient groups.

Care home residents were more likely to be exception reported from all QOF targets for a condition. For example, 34% of patients with stroke in care homes were excluded compared with 17% in the community, and 35% compared with 9% for diabetes. Quality indicators for use of antiplatelet therapy and BP monitoring had the least difference.

Authors said the study shows a need to improve care for chronic diseases among older people in care homes. They concluded: ‘Our current findings support enhancement of pay for performance systems to include measures that are particularly relevant to residents of care homes and vulnerable older people in the community, such as pain management, falls and continence care.’

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register

Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

GP training: Useful resources when preparing for the AKT

GP training: Useful resources when preparing for the AKT

Dr Branavan Anandasundaram highlights useful resources that GP trainees can use to...

GP training: How to succeed in the AKT

GP training: How to succeed in the AKT

Dr Branavan Anandasundaram passed the AKT earlier this year with a score of 89.5%....

Medico-legal: Advice on prescribing opioids

Medico-legal: Advice on prescribing opioids

The MDU's Dr Ellie Mein advises on how to avoid the medico-legal risks associated...

Map: How CQC ratings for general practice vary across England

Map: How CQC ratings for general practice vary across England

An overwhelming 95% of GP practices in England are rated either 'good' or 'outstanding'...

Rise in GP waiting times 'driving more patients to Google health advice'

Rise in GP waiting times 'driving more patients to Google health advice'

Longer waits for GP appointments may be pushing more patients to search for health...

GP locum rates continue to rise in most parts of the UK, poll reveals

GP locum rates continue to rise in most parts of the UK, poll reveals

Average hourly rates received by locums have risen across England over the past 12...