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News

FPRP News (February 2018 issue)

February 2, 2018
 
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FEBRUARY 2018
We are happy to announce the very first issue of FPRP News! Our intent is to keep you up-to-date on events and news relating to the Family Practice Renewal Program. We aim to include only relevant content, releasing new updates as events occur. We look forward to your feedback and we commit to improvement in every issue!
  What’s FPRP again?!  
 

The Family Practice Renewal Program (FPRP) is part of an Agreement between the Newfoundland and Labrador Medical Association (NLMA) and the Department of Health and Community Services (DHCS).

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With a mission of “transforming family practice for better health”, our program signifies agreement between NLMA, DHCS and our four Regional Health Authorities (RHAs)-(i) that improved population health and health system sustainability in Newfoundland and Labrador will require a renewed focus on primary health care reform, and on family practice reform, in particular; and (ii) that family physicians have an important role to play in the improvement and full integration of primary care health care services and supports.

The program is governed by the Family Practice Renewal Committee (FPRC), with membership from NLMA, DHCS, and the RHAs. The Committee works within a consensus model, which means members are committed to finding solutions that everyone supports, and that are made in the best interest of the whole.

FPRP has three core initiatives:

Family Practice Networks are structures through which physician groups will have the opportunity to address common practice needs, as well as local patient and population health needs, in collaboration with their Regional Health Authorities.

Click for more

 

A Fee Code Program provides enhancements to the fee-for-service schedule through the creation of fee codes designed to achieve patient, physician, and health system benefits, such as comprehensive care, collaboration with other providers, and improvements in patient access.

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A Practice Improvement Program will provide physician practices with education and support for clinical and administrative issues.

Click for more

 
     

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  What’s Up?!… with Family Practice Networks?  
 

We’re now working with three Family Practice Networks (FPNs) in various stages of development, in Western, Central, and St. John’s, with discussions ongoing in other areas. We have seen interest in FPNs grow significantly over the past year, and 25 physician leaders are now working with our program staff to develop FPNs across the province. As part of our FPN consultation process, we’ve talked with close to 200 family physicians over the past year.

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Through a combination of group sessions and interviews, you gave us your ideas and priorities for FPNs in NL. You told us you are challenged in meeting increased demand for patient care services, both in relation to patient volume as well as complexity of care. You talked specifically about:

  • Supporting patients with mental health issues and chronic diseases.
  • Care of older adults.
  • The worsening problem of chronic opioid use.
  • Meeting patient access needs.
  • Lack of supports for team-based approaches to care.
  • Managing administrative responsibilities/workload.
  • Lack of communication with your Regional Health Authorities (RHAs).
  • Lack of consultation with family physicians in decisions that affect community family practice.

You see FPNs as providing opportunities for:

  • Improved working relationships amongst family physicians, and between family physicians and other providers.
  • Team-based approaches to care and sharing of resources.
  • Cross-referral to other family physicians with different skill sets.
  • Improving physician recruitment and retention, as well as locum coverage.
  • Access to, and knowledge of, community resources.
  • Better communication and collaboration with the Regional Health Authorities.
  • A collective voice in decisions involving community family practice.

If interested in talking to us further about FPN development, please don’t hesitate to contact Ian Hodder at (709) 726-0118 ext. 324 or ihodder@nlma.nl.ca

 
     

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  New Fee Codes Coming in 2018!  
 

The intent of the Fee Code Program is to develop and implement new fee codes for the support of comprehensive patient care delivery. Now that the 2013-2017 Memorandum of Agreement is signed between the NLMA and the Provincial Government, we are in the final stages of readying our first new Fee Codes for release – a Shared Care Code and a Patient Care Telephone Code. Please stay tuned for launch date – to be announced soon!

Participation
Fee-For-Service Family Physicians/General Practitioners can participate in the Fee Code Program, subject to meeting eligibility requirements, and completion of a program registration form.

Our first two codes for launch are:

Shared Care Code: Provides participating physicians with compensation for two-way collaborative conferencing with other healthcare providers for development of a patient care plan.

  • If the patient is present, payable at $30 per 15 minutes (i.e. one unit).
  • If the patient is not present, payable at $30 per 15 minutes or greater part of 15 minutes.
  • Payable to a maximum of 2 units per patient per day.
  • Payable to a maximum of 100 conferences per physician annually.

Patient Care Telephone Code: Provides participating physicians with compensation for two-way telephone communication between the physician (or other health care provider employed within the physician’s office) and the patient (or the patient’s medical representative).

  • Payable at $10 per 5 minutes (i.e. one unit).
  • Payable for 2 units per patient per day.
  • Payable to a maximum of 225 telephone calls per physician annually.
  • Not payable for simple prescription renewals, notification of normal test results, or notification of office, referral, or other appointments.

Please visit www.familypracticerenewalnl.ca for more information on Fee Code Program eligibility and details. Registration forms and support materials will be sent to physicians as the program readies for launch.

 
     

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  Next Code for Development  
  We are already working on our next fee code for development, for enhanced care of patients with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). Evidence shows that a code focused on COPD carries significant opportunity for improvements in patient care in our province. We are consulting with our Clinical Advisory Group (see below for further info), and other front-line clinicians, as we design the code. For further information and suggestions, please contact Glenda Nash at (709) 726-0118 ext. 321 or gnash@nlma.nl.ca.  
     

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  Physicians Voice Their Priorities for Practice Improvement  
  During physician consultations, you told us your priority areas for Practice Improvement. These include: practice management and access improvement, chronic disease management education and support, collaborative team-based care, care of older adults, mental health, the essentials of starting a practice, and the list goes on.

We are working on developing a program that will start addressing some of these areas in 2018. Expect significant activity this year, and stay tuned for details!

For information and suggestions with respect to the Practice Improvement Program, contact Paula Hanrahan at (709) 726-0118 ext. 323 or phanrahan@nlma.nl.ca.

 
     
Do You Know… Your FPRC Physician Reps?
Your physician representatives on the Family Practice Renewal Committee are working on your behalf to guide program development. They are:

Dr. Wendy Graham, Family Physician, Port aux Basques, Co-Chair

Dr. Annette McCarthy, Family Physician, Bay Bulls

Dr. Steve Major, Family Physician, St. John’s

Please reach out to your representatives for feedback and input.
Click here for the full list of Committee representatives.

click here for list

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Do You Know… Your Clinical Advisory Group Reps?
We have formed a Clinical Advisory Group (CAG) consisting of 10 physician members, representative of fee-for-service, salaried, academic, resident, and rural/urban family physicians. Their feedback has informed key decisions and has provided valuable input on the practicality of programs and concepts. We look forward to consulting with them a lot more in 2018! Click here for a list of CAG members:
click here for list
OUR MISSION
Transforming family practice for better health.
OUR VISION
Family physicians, primary health care providers, and patients working together for an effective and sustainable system.