The Private Practice Register: a new chapter

Published: Wednesday, 21 April 2021 14:29

Do you know where to find the documents to renew your hospital practising privileges? What about the appraisal information necessary to maintain your licence to practise? Does a change of address or bank entail hours of calls and emails to ensure these details are updated on all the relevant systems?

The Private Practice Register (The PPR) is Healthcode’s smart solution to these challenges. A free and secure online platform from where you can control your practice information and documents, ensuring that organisations have the correct details. More than 24,000 practitioners now have a unique PPR profile, which holds a wealth of information.

Each profile has 11 sections:

  1. Main profile page – details and contact information, registration with one of the statutory health regulators, GMC number and membership of professional bodies. There is also the option to upload a photo and a short biography.
  2. NHS Practice – name and address of your employing NHS trust, job title, start date, end date, uploaded NHS reference and NHS referee details.
  3. Private practice – facilities where you have practising privileges with start and end dates, the type of care provided, patient demographic and practice hours.
  4. Scope of practice (New) – procedures you are trained and competent to perform and permitted to undertake under your licence to practise (details below).
  5. Fitness to practise – licence to practise, appraisal information, DBS certificate and ICO registration. Healthcode’s GMC republishing licence automatically updates The PPR with information from the List of Registered Medical Practitioners, including revalidation status, Designated Body, Responsible Officer and ARF due date.
  6. Specialties and qualifications – details of primary medical qualification, specialty, sub-specialty and procedures undertaken by CCSD code and description.
  7. Medical secretary – name and contact details of medical secretary/practice manager and office hours.
  8. Publications – details of published papers, including the option to link or upload.
  9. Banking – payment information.
  10. Indemnity – medical indemnity provider and documentation.
  11. Insurer recognition - overview of PMI recognition.

Make connections

Beyond the convenience of storing all this information in one place, The PPR also connects all stakeholders in the independent healthcare sector: practitioners, PMIs and more than 300 private hospitals. This paves the way for more effective working practices and communication across the sector:

  • PMI recognition – If you are new to independent practice, save time by completing The PPR registration form and applying for recognition to multiple PMIs. These PMIs then complete the process using data on The PPR. Nor will you need to inform all your insurer contacts when your details change because they automatically receive update notifications via the PPR, while you will also be notified if your recognition status changes.
  • Hospital practice – Subscribing private hospitals can view the PPR profiles of their consultant population and are automatically notified of updates, saving you the trouble of informing each hospital individually. You are notified if a hospital wants to amend information about your practice which it believes to be inaccurate, such as practice hours or start date.
  • A secure network – Use the PPR platform to access Healthcode’s Secure Messaging service and send encrypted messages to key contacts within hospitals and PMIs.

Stay in control

Profile access is restricted to authorised organisations for specific purposes. PMIs have read-only access to the data necessary to recognise a practitioner or to validate bills. Hospitals with a standard subscription have access to the profile with limited authority to correct inaccuracies concerning their own organisation, such as the practitioner’s start date. When this happens, you are automatically notified so you can either confirm the update or contact the hospital to query the change.

The PPR is fully encrypted and data is stored within a private dedicated infrastructure in the UK. A back-up copy of the data is taken daily and securely stored in a separate UK hosted disaster recovery facility. Account access is controlled by log-in ID and password.

What’s next?

Healthcode continues to extend the capabilities of The PPR to enhance operational efficiency, information governance and quality assurance across the sector. Here are the latest developments:

New-look fitness to practise section - Upload and store appraisal information: details of current appraiser, the appraisal period, summary, Personal Development Plan and your full appraisal.

New scope of practice section - We are aligning The PPR with the principles of the Medical Practitioner’s Assurance Framework (MPAF) which requires hospitals to consider practitioners’ whole scope of practice (private and NHS) when awarding or renewing practising privileges. Ultimately, we want consultants to be able to apply for practising privileges through The PPR and for this process to fully comply with the MPAF principles.

The PPR’s scope of practice section is a significant step towards this ambitious goal and currently being rolled out by specialty. It will initially show CCSD-coded procedures performed by a consultant at private hospital and clinic sites, the number of times they were carried out at each site over a 12-month rolling period, and the last time the procedure was recorded. This data will be automatically captured from validated hospital bills submitted through our Clearing Service where the consultant is identified as the controlling specialist. It will only be visible to the consultant and subscribing hospitals where they hold practising privileges.

Agreeing data standards – Development work is already underway to complete the scope of practice section to match the rest of the data requirements in the MPAF, including information about practitioners’ NHS practice. Healthcode is consulting across the sector to ensure we get this right for all stakeholders. For example, we have formed a PPR Data Standards Group which is considering what data should be included in each PPR profile and in what format. The group includes representatives from hospitals, PMIs and practitioners, such as the BMA Private Practice Committee.