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FAQ:The Quality and Outcomes Framework

What is the QOF?
In April 2004 following several years of negotiation most UK general practitioners moved to a new contract. One of the stated aims was to pay GPs for the quality of care given rather than just the size of their list (although things were never that simple). The Quality and Outcomes framework was the mechanism devised to enable this.
How is the QOF structured?
There were 1050 points up for grabs in 2005 and 2006. 130 of these are calculated from other points. Of the rest 550 are for clinical achievement and 420 for organisation. Each of these is further broken down into smaller areas. In the case of the clinical indicators there are eleven disease areas. There were some changes in 2007 onwards with only 1000 points but more points on the clinical indicators.
How are the points calculated?
For clinical areas there is an increase in points from a threshold achievement in each indicator until a ceiling value is reached. The threshold was 25% in 2005 and 2006 and rose to 40% from 2007. The ceiling differs between indicators. For organisational indicators there is a Yes/No answer.
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