All practices will be made to submit data to the National Diabetes Audit under changes negotiated for next year’s GMS contract.
The GPC said that while most practices do already take part in the audit, from July they will all be contractually required to allow relevant data to be extracted.
The Public Accounts Committee said that a drop in the proportion of practices taking part – which dropped from over 80% to 71% in 2012 – was ‘undermining one of the most comprehensive audits in the world’.
The Department of Health and NHS England had advised the fall was down to an unintended consequence of allowing practices to choose to ‘opt in’ rather than ‘opt out’ of participating, a change introduced to protect patient confidentiality.
However, the Committee also said NHS England needed to do more to improve GP IT systems and support GPs to provide the data.
A report on the latest audit concluded last year that there is still too much variation between regions in how well practices complete all NICE-recommended care processes in diabetes, or deliver education plans.
The National Audit Office has also singled out GPs’ participation in the audit as an area for improvement, after finding that improvements in care for patients with diabetes had ‘stalled’.