GPs condemn plans for practices to publish quality accounts

GPs have condemned DoH plans for practice quality accounts as yet another layer of information to 'confuse' patients.

Richard Vautrey
Richard Vautrey

The DoH last week announced that GP surgeries and community care providers will have to publish quality accounts by June 2011.

The proposals are initially aimed at acute trusts, publishing next year, but the government is asking for opinions on how they could be tailored for primary care.

Acute trusts will have to provide an assessment of their performance in safety, effectiveness and patient experience, their priorities for improvements, their participation in research, innovation, clinical audit and an examination of how many data coding mistakes have been made over the past year.

They also have to include an assessment of their success in meeting local quality priorities.

The DoH claims the aim of the accounts is three-fold: to let patients hold organisations to account, to force organisations to analyse their own performance and to help commissioners make decisions.

However, GPC deputy chairman Dr Richard Vautrey said quality accounts, like balanced scorecards, did not demonstrate added value because they did not incorporate context, such as the population and deprivation challenges specific practices face.

‘They don't really give patients a meaningful picture of the actual quality a practice is achieving through their own efforts,' Dr Vautrey said.

  • Read the full version of this story in this week's issue of GP dated 25 September.


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