Introduction of quality accounts delayed by DoH

GPs will not have to produce 'quality accounts' until at least 2012, DoH documents reveal.

The requirement to produce quality accounts was supposed to be phased in for primary care by 2011 but the DoH has put back the date by a year for ‘further testing'.

Other providers, such as hospitals and community services, must provide information on the quality of their services and how they intend to improve them in the accounts.  

Although many GP practices have started to produce quality accounts, it will not be a statutory duty until 2012 at the earliest, the NHS’s medical director Sir Bruce Keogh confirmed in a letter.

‘The primary care pilots found that although primary care providers produced quality accounts to a good standard, they needed much assistance from PCTs and SHAs. Further testing is therefore required.

‘We intend to encourage primary care organisations to produce quality accounts in June 2011 covering the period 2010/11. The intention is to make quality accounts a formal requirement for primary care providers from the following year in June 2012 covering the period 2011/12.’

GP leaders have criticised the concept of quality accounts in the past, saying they will confuse patients and be excessively bureaucratic.

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