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Health: Epilepsy

Volume 707: debated on Tuesday 10 February 2009

Question

Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government whether, as part of the current review of the quality and outcomes framework, they will ensure that primary care trusts collate information about epilepsy patients under the age of 18 to enable services to be developed in line with local needs. [HL1049]

The quality and outcomes framework (QOF) epilepsy register currently excludes patients aged 17 and under because children with epilepsy are generally under the care of a paediatrician. QOF indicators are designed to incentivise high quality of care where the responsibility for ongoing management rests principally with the general practice team. One of the principles underpinning the QOF is that data should never be collected purely for audit purposes.

The department has asked the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence to oversee a new independent and transparent process for developing and reviewing QOF clinical and health improvement indicators for England from 1 April 2009 as part of its role in providing guidance for the National Health Service based on evidence of clinical effectiveness and cost-effectiveness. We launched a public consultation on the proposed new process on 30 October 2008. The consultation ends on 2 February. Subject to the outcome of that consultation, any proposal for changes to QOF indicators would need to be considered under that new process.