GP practice effectiveness, as measured by QOF

The Quality and Outcomes Framework (QOF) is the annual reward and incentive programme detailing GP practice achievements. It assesses surgeries across five domains. Each domain is comprised of a set of indicators against which practices score points depending on their level of performance. Here we examine the QOF clinical domain.

How has the QOF clinical domain achievement changed?

QOF achievements

Comparisons over time are difficult as the QOF targets are recalibrated at various points. It is clear, however, that the vast majority of England's GP practices are performing well across the disease management areas, with little variation in performance level in the last ten years. Between 2006/07 and 2015/16 the performance of depression and palliative care against the metrics is relatively low versus other conditions. There is also a noticeable drop in the achievement against the learning disabilities indicator group between 2010/11 and 2011/12, from 99.2% to 83.5%, though this has since recovered to 99.7% in 2015/16 . In 2012/13, however, average QOF performance fell for the first time in three years with decreases reported across the majority of clinical indicator groups - NHS Digital has suggested this may have been partly due to the addition of two new disease areas (peripheral arterial disease and osteoporosis) to the clinical domain. The average achievement score across all practices in England fell again between 2012/13 and 2013/14 from 96.7% of the total points available to 92.4%, though average achievement has improved to 95.2% in 2015/16.

Updated November 2016.

How has QOF achievement on asthma changed?

Performance against the asthma indicator group within the clinical domain can be used as an exemplar for other indicator groups in the QOF clinical domain. As shown in the graph there has been high achievement with limited variation over time. There was a slight dip to 97.15% in 2012/13 though this has since risen to 97.38% in 2015/16.

Updated November 2016

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