A letter to the Editor in the Medical Independent some time ago will resonate with many GP’s and anyone with a management role in General Practice.
Form filling and rituals are the order of the day to claim entitlements which any GP with a panel of 100 medical card patients or over is entitled to for annual and study leave.
On many occasions, having received approval from your local primary care office, you may get a form returned to you from the PCRS because a section hasn’t been completed or it might be missing a signature and that’s if you are lucky to be sent this form. Sometimes it will appear on your monthly pink sheet as a notification that a claim has not been paid and let’s face it, you’ll only see this if you have the time to go through your statement in detail which many GP’s just don’t have the time to do.
As a result of this, many practices have unpaid entitlements for annual, study, sick leave which they may never get paid for and in some cases maternity leave.
“tens of thousands of euros going unclaimed”
This is just one area in which GP’s have an entitlement to claim. There are so many others which can result in tens of thousands of euros going unclaimed in GP Surgeries each year which really does make you ask the question; is this a cunning PCRS plan??
To follow is a humorous extract from a ‘letter to the Editor’ in the Medical independent some time ago which was sent in by Dr Mel Gilmartin.
Her suggestion was that every September, the PCRS should write to every contracting Doctor, as follows;
If only it were that simple !! 😉
We haven’t even touched on all the other entitlements. None of the state schemes are transparent with one of the most complex probably being the Childhood immunisation scheme. No matter how well versed you are or think you are, it requires a significant amount of time and energy to keep on top of it!
During my years working as a Practice Manager, it required a lot of time and energy to ensure that the practice was getting paid for everything that the GP’s were entitled to. This alone took up a huge percentage of my time and this luxury of time is something that many GP’s do not have as they are providing care for their ever expanding patient caseload.
From my recent experience of carrying out audits in a variety of surgeries, there is definitely a need to keep a sharp eye on your Practice finances and income that’s left unclaimed from PCRS, state schemes, private health insurance and other income streams.
Unclaimed income which you are entitled to is much better in your hands than being left in the Bank accounts of the various state agencies! One thing that is guaranteed is that they will not tell you when they owe you money!!
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