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Assessment Process

  1. Physician Selection - annual selection is based on a stratified random selection (within identified groupings of doctors, individuals will be randomly selected.)
    Groupings:
    greater than 64 years of age
    50 - 64 years of age
    less than 50 years of age
    ]
    ] - family physicians
    ]
    Specialists will be assessed by entire section specialty (dermatology, pediatrics, etc.) as determined by the PEP Committee.
  2. Pre-visit Questionnaire - establishes a demographic and professional profile of the physician being assessed. This information will also determine eligibility for assessment.
  3. Patient Questionnaire (family physicians & specialists) - sent by PEP to 60 patients selected by the physician to survey patient impressions in areas such as communication, availability, staff performance and preventative medicine. A summary report is created from all patient responses and presented to the assessed physician.
  4. Referred Specialist Questionnaire (family physicians) - to survey the quality of referrals sent by family physicians to specialists. A list of specialist physicians, that the family physician being assessed has referred patients to recently, will be provided to PEP from the Medical Services Branch of Saskatchewan Health (no financial information is received or reviewed by PEP). Twenty specialist names will then be randomly chosen for distribution of this questionnaire.
  5. Referring Physician Questionnaire (specialists only) - sent by PEP to 20 referring physicians selected by the specialist to survey how colleagues perceive the specialist's services in areas such as communication, availability, and patient satisfaction. A summary report is created from all patient responses and presented to the assessed physician.
  6. Physical Facilities & Practice Organization Questionnaire - the purpose of this questionnaire is to collect standardized information prior to each assessment regarding facility and practice organization.
  7. Full Office Assessment
    • Office visit - a physician assessor visits the office and assesses the physical facility, staff and equipment. The assessor reviews at least 20 patient charts, using a predetermined format to assess chart content and quality of care.
    • Physician interview - immediately after the office visit, the assessor meets with the physician being assessed and reviews the results of the assessment. The assessor also presents the results of an annual profile, received from Saskatchewan Health (Medical Services Plan), so that the assessed physician can see a description of the demographics of his/her practice as well as to see how his/her practice profile compares to their peer group. This annual MSP profile is provided on an informational basis alone. PEP does not receive or review any financial information from Saskatchewan Health. During the interview, the assessor may point out areas of strength in the practice and also areas for possible improvement.
  8. Final Report - the assessor's report is submitted to the PEP committee which determines the final category for the assessed physician. The Final Report is then sent to the assessed physician. In most cases, recommendations for improvement are made but no follow-up review is needed. In some cases, PEP makes recommendations for improvement and arranges to review the practice again. This may take the form of a follow-up letter to ensure that deficiencies have been corrected or may require another office visit. A very small number of practices (in other jurisdictions, 1% or less) may be found very deficient or dangerous to patients. In these cases, PEP does not pursue the assessment further and is required to report the matter to The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Saskatchewan.
  9. Post-assessment questionnaire - sent to the assessed physician with the Final Report as an invitation to provide feedback to PEP on the assessment process and its value.

 

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