Private Medical Insurers can eliminate the paperwork and duplication involved in recognising practitioners, thanks to a central online register of private practitioners developed by Healthcode. Aviva and AXA PPP healthcare have already subscribed to The Private Practice Register (The PPR) and Healthcode is at various stages of talks with other PMIs.
As experts in IT systems for the private health sector, Healthcode has developed The PPR as an industry-wide solution to the cumbersome application process currently used by PMIs and private hospitals. The company researched the information required by the different PMIs and has been engaging with some of the major insurers to create a single online profile for practitioners which encompasses all the minimum amount of information required by the different PMIs.
When a practitioner applies for recognition to a subscribing insurer, the insurer will have access to the practitioner’s full profile on The PPR. This shows essential information, including private practice contact details, specialty and clinical interests, qualifications, biography, indemnity and (if applicable) NHS employer details. To help ensure patient safety, subscribers will be able to check that a practitioner has an up-to-date certificate from the Disclosure and Barring Service and quickly confirm their current regulatory body registration details. Healthcode are working with regulatory bodies such as the GMC so updates can be flagged to subscribing insurers.
The PPR gives all practitioners complimentary access to Healthcode electronic billing and secure messaging services to support their practice. Healthcode believes this will further drive the transition from paper invoices, helping to optimise billing efficiency and accuracy within the insured private health sector. PMIs that do not currently subscribe to the PPR still have access to basic information about practitioners for e-billing purposes.
As part of Healthcode’s long-standing commitment to information security, The PPR is stored in a secure UK data centre and the system is encrypted to online banking standards. Users have their own account log-in details and password to access the system.
Healthcode’s Managing Director, Peter Connor said: “The PPR eliminates the time-consuming and repetitive red tape involved in manually checking specialists when they apply for recognition. But this is not simply an efficient one-off registration tool: it has real ongoing benefits for users and patients. For example, The PPR’s live data about practitioners’ license to practice is an asset when it comes to clinical governance and ensuring patient safety, while the secure messaging facility provides an encrypted communication channel between practitioners and hospitals or PMIs which protect patient confidentiality. We expect to add more features in future including the opportunity for practitioners to submit information about their clinical skills and experience.”
“The PPR is one way in which Healthcode’s technology can streamline administrative processes and reduce costs for subscribing insurers and providers. It also highlights the sector-wide collaboration necessary to modernise private healthcare and I’m proud that Healthcode is leading the way.”
Jayne Evans, Head of Supply Chain Management from Aviva said: “We had no hesitation in subscribing to The PPR because it is an innovation which will benefit everyone in the private health sector. The service makes the process of recognising non-hospital providers fast and efficient for us and is far more cost-effective than developing the technology in-house. It reduces the administrative burden for practitioners when applying for recognition and it is better for patients because it will be easier to carry out due diligence on specialists and keep up-to-date with changes in their practice. We also expect that the easier application process will encourage practitioners to seek recognition which will increase the options for Aviva policy-holders.”