NHS England should suspend QOF for the rest of the year
Dr Chaand Nagpaul, GPC chair, writes to Ros Roughton, director of NHS Commissioning
In light of the recent joint announcement between BMA Wales and the Welsh Government to relax the Quality and Outcomes Framework in Wales in order to free up practice time we wish to formally raise the prospect of a similar approach for England.
As you will be aware the Welsh agreement allows practices to opt-out of 75% of QOF indicators for the remainder of the contractual year to assist with the ongoing workload pressures in general practice. Northern Ireland have similarly followed suit and in Scotland QOF has ended completely.
There is absolutely no doubt that practices in England are under significant workload pressures. At such a time as this it is imperative that NHS England does all it can to relieve this pressure so that practices can prioritise the care of urgent cases and provide support to the most vulnerable. Whilst practices will already have done most of the work to achieve QOF indicators this year, removing the requirement to achieve these targets will reduce unnecessary bureaucratic burdens and send an important signal of support to GPs in England at this challenging time.
I hope that this is something to which NHS England will give serious and immediate consideration and I look forward to your response.
Dr Chaand Nagpaul