GPs urged to show caution when joining PIP QI

Matt Woodley

2/08/2019 3:37:01 PM

The Federal Government program will inject $200 million into primary care, but what do practice owners need to be aware of before signing up?

Woman looks at screen
GPs are being asked to fully consider PIP QI

The Practice Incentive Program Quality Improvement (PIP QI) Incentive requires accredited general practices to share de-identified, aggregated data with local Primary Health Networks (PHNs) and participate in quality improvement activities.
In return, practices will receive financial remuneration, as well as information to help review and improve performance. It has also been designed to allow GPs to have a greater role in managing the health of their whole practice population.
Recently released guidelines finalised many details surrounding eligibility requirements and data sharing expectations for the twice-delayed program, but GPs and practices are still being urged to fully consider the arrangements before signing up.
In particular, Dr Rob Hosking, Chair of the RACGP Expert Committee – Practice Technology and Management (REC–PTM), told newsGP practice owners need to ensure appropriate data governance and risk management is followed.
‘The current model of data going to the PHN is more than is required for the PIP QI and yet some GPs are being told they have to provide all of it to receive the incentive, which is not correct,’ he said.
‘Under the rules of the PIP QI, GPs only have to provide 10 data elements. To complicate things further, issues remain with some of the main extraction tools, which seem to be unable to extract the 10 data elements only.
‘If in doubt, it’s probably best to wait at this point in time. We have until at least mid-October to sign up and provide data.’
Current figures indicate around 55% of eligible practices have already signed up, and in turn will receive $5 per Standard Whole Patient Equivalents (SWPEs) per year, capped at $50,000 per practice.
Dr Michael Wright, Chair of RACGP Expert Committee – Funding and Health System Reform, told newsGP the college is supportive of PIP QI, but agrees practices should be mindful that there are a range of outstanding issues still being worked through.
‘For the purposes of the PIP-QI, practices just need to share data about the 10 improvement measures with their PHN, along with some de-identified practice level demographics. Practices may want to share more data but that is beyond the PIP QI process,’ he said.
‘Before signing up, practice owners should make sure that any data sharing agreement meets their needs, and have clear explanation of risk and privacy obligations. We understand that the department is developing guidance for these agreements in response to concerns raised by RACGP and other groups.

‘We understand that this guidance will be available very soon. The cut-off for the first data sharing is not until mid-October, so there is still time to work all the outstanding issues, and practices do not need to rush into anything.
‘The RACGP is working hard to address these and other issues through the department.’ 
More information on PIP QI can be found here. GPs with concerns around individual contracts or data collection arrangements are advised to contact their local PHN.

department of health funding incentives PIP QI

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Dr David Zhi Qiang Yu   4/08/2019 7:12:41 PM

We are group practice with 5 GPs and we use Best Practice software for our daily practice. We have serous concern joining the PIP QI.

Our Local Primary Health Network - Sydney North Health Network (SNHN) has asked us to install a software program - PAT CAT (Pen CS) to transfer the de-identified, aggregated data for the PIP QI. When we signed up the PAT CAT, which we need to agree to transfer all 3 components of data i.e. all patient records, appointment book and accounts. Because appointment book and account have been used, the data transferred to the SNHN is not longer de-identified. Therefore the integrity of practice owned independent data and privacy of the patients have been loss. At that point, GPs from our practice decided to uninstall the PAT CAT.

I would appreciate if our college, RACGP to clarify how practices share 10 data elements with their PHN for the purposes of the PIP-QI without compromise practice independent data.

Debbie   6/08/2019 6:52:59 AM

Hello Dr. you are worried for patient data, most of the online appointments company keep a copy of your patient identifiable data including your appointment time along with doctors details etc.

Hamish Steiner   6/08/2019 7:26:06 AM

Our PHN also refuses to just collect the required data but instead we must sign up to provide everything they want.
No way to audit what is being sent.
No way to check if patients who opt out are indeed opted out.
And now have to sign up by 15th August!.
Multiple other small but significant risks to the surgery, and once I sign the contract I cant discuss it with anyone due to the gag clause in it.

Dr Joveria Javaid   7/08/2019 10:45:50 AM

Truly a BIGGG Concern !!!!!

Dr. F. Mitra   10/08/2019 8:19:50 AM

This is arm twisting of GPs by the Government. There is no patient doctor privilege if we do this. We are screwed if we provide the data and screwed if we do not, by losing funds for our starved practices. Where are the principles of morality, legality and medical code of ethics?

GP   10/08/2019 10:38:17 AM

Sounds like gov at its best to offer funding to GP for what they need, this time practice data. If the above issues are real on the floor, then the RACGP needs to stand up and represents its thousands members! Gov will only change policy from lobbyists and media exposure, sad but true.