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How to increase your QOF payments: Palliative care

30 October 2023

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GP Dr Gavin Jamie looks at how practices can maximise achievement within the palliative care area of QOF’s clinical domain

Summary – indicators and value

  • Indicators: 1
  • Points: 3
  • Prevalence: N/A
  • £/patient on the register (estimated): N/A

The palliative care area includes a single indicator – to maintain a patient register.

It is a slightly unusual area in that there is a disease register, but no prevalence adjustment – the three points are paid at the same rate regardless of the numbers on the register.

It is best to make sure that there is at least one patient on the register at the end of March.

Indicator PC001: Maintain patient register (3 points)

There are a wide range of codes for palliative care and terminal illness that will enter a patient on to the register, although I would recommend entering the explicit code for an end-of-life care register.

The only reason for not getting the points automatically would be if there was no patient on the register at the end of the year.

Key points:

  • As there is inevitably a high mortality of patients on the register, care should be taken that it is up-to-date, particularly if there are only a small number of patients.
  • If no patients are eligible for the register at the end of the year and the practice has kept up the register throughout the year, the points can be added manually by NHS England, although to reduce complication and uncertainty this should be avoided.

Indicator in full

  • The contractor establishes and maintains a register of all patients in need of palliative care/support irrespective of age (PC001).

Dr Gavin Jamie is a GP in Swindon and runs the QOF database website

Further reading/resources

NHS England – Quality and Outcomes Framework guidance for 2023/24. Published 30 March 2023.