Practice managers can better maximise prescription services reimbursements for personally administered items, experts from the Family Doctor Association (FDA) and The Surgery Network explain.
Dr Peter Swinyard, the FDA national chairman, said: “With falling GP practice revenues, it’s even more important we keep an eye on the pennies to sustain our service to patients.”
Firstly, managers should check they are claiming for vaccines, anaesthetics, injections, pessaries, IUCD’s (including diaphragms), diagnostic reagents, and certain sutures.
Similarly, for the monthly FP34PD submission be aware that the dispensing fee is reduced when more than 455 items are allocated to a GP in any one month. Therefore during the flu season enter ‘influenza’ separately for each responsible GP.
Despatch these forms no later than the fifth day of the month and retain proof of postage, the GP experts advised managers.
“When the dispensing fee is factored in, we have found surgeries that have been able to increase their income by over £1,200 per annum for items they didn’t think were worth claiming,” said Tracy Hole, an associate partner of the Surgery Network and a practice manager for seven years.
Managers can also raise prescriptions for claimable items by communicating the list of items to clinicians, and holding a workshop on it so that everyone is involved and understand their role. Also identify someone to maintain an end-to-end view, the experts recommended.
It can also be useful to use visual cues and signs to help staff remember, and to create two entries when raising prescriptions for more than one of the same item, to ensure a dispensing fee is applied to each (add to the second ‘multiple items administered’), they urged.