Notes to editors
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(1) The research was conducted by The King's Fund together with researchers at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.
(2) The National Institute for Health Research Service Delivery and Organisation (NIHR SDO) programme was established in 1999. It aims to improve health outcomes for people by commissioning research evidence that improves practice in relation to the organisation and delivery of health care. It also builds research capability and capacity to carry out research among those who manage, organise and deliver services, and improves their understanding of the research literature and how to use research evidence. The goal of the programme is to identify, prioritise and refine the research needs of the NHS management community. The programme commissions research that will be of great value in shaping and contributing to decision-making and in promoting the more effective use of research evidence by NHS managers.
(3) The National Institute for Health Research provides the framework through which the research staff and research infrastructure of the NHS in England is positioned, maintained and managed as a national research facility. The NIHR provides the NHS with the support and infrastructure it needs to conduct first-class research funded by the government and its partners alongside high-quality patient care, education and training. Its aim is to support outstanding individuals (both leaders and collaborators), working in world-class facilities (both NHS and university),conducting leading edge research focused on the needs of patients. www.nihr.ac.uk
- This project was funded by the National Institute for Health Research Service Delivery and Organisation programme (project number 08/1716/207).
- The views and opinions are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the NIHR SDO programme or the Department of Health.
- The King's Fund is a charity that seeks to understand how the health system in England can be improved. Using that insight, we help to shape policy, transform services and bring about behaviour change. Our work includes research, analysis, leadership development and service improvement. We also offer a wide range of resources to help everyone working in health to share knowledge, learning and ideas.
Background on QOF:
The General Medical Services contract of 2004 introduced a pay-for-performance element – the Quality and Outcomes Framework (QOF) – which rewards practices for the quality of clinical care and organisational management. The main objective of QOF was to drive up the quality of primary care.
An independent inquiry into the quality of general practice commissioned by The King's Fund recently highlighted the wide variations that persist in the quality of care provided by general practice in England. It called for a greater focus on quality improvement and the need for quality to be defined more broadly from the patient's perspective. It also called for general practice to take a wider responsibility for populations and to contribute to improvements in health and working with others to reduce inequalities. Visit The King's Fund website for more information.