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simpson19
17-08-2006, 11:57 AM
We now receive at least 2 requests per week for these from solicitors. This is, depending on the patient, quite a time consuming job, for little reward. Is anyone else noticing an increase in these requests? I have also noticed a trend for solicitors to now instruct the court to issue a warrant for these documents, and after discussing this with Glasgow LMC was advised that we cannot charge in this case. Not sure if there is any way around this problem. Any comments would be appreciated.

Rosalind1
17-08-2006, 01:33 PM
We get a small amount of requests for copy notes from solicitors, but this seems to be increasing. We have, on occaision, when we have been inundated with large amounts of copying (patients with huge records), asked the PCT to do this for us. They have been happy to do this in the past, but not so sure how it stands now. They would charge a copying fee to the requestor. Hope this helps.

pruritus
24-08-2006, 11:55 AM
This is not a new problem but is, I agree, increasing and I wonder if the solicitors use the whole set of notes for a fishing expedition?

However the way we deal with these may be helpful. Firstly the amount payable is limited by HMG to 50 which includes computer based and paper based notes. If the notes are small, raise an invoice for this amount stating copies provided on receipt of cheque and send to the solicitor. Do no more until cheque received. This can cut down requests by 30% :-)

However for "big" sets of paper notes it is not economic at all (for 50) to provide copies so the invoice goes off for 50 and states that
the paper notes will be forwarded for THEM to photcopy and return. Again nothing is done until cheque received.

Last 3 years worked fine.

gary
24-08-2006, 12:19 PM
Pruritis, do you mean that you charge them even if they copy the records themselves? effectively charging for your admin time in complying with their request- fair enough - I can see that this is reasonable from our perspective, but is it strictly allowable? ( I haven't perused the doh advice in any detail).
What is annoying though is that I can't charge VAT on top of the 50; I have to pay the VAT from the 50, or so my accountant tells me.
I do however charge for postage, something which occassionally causes some friction, but which usually resolves after I explain that the alternative is for them to collect the copied notes themselves.

pruritus
24-08-2006, 03:35 PM
If the notes are small and take little effort to copy then 50 fair enough. However the mega mammas are taking the mick. Merely having a brief look through them to check nothing that shouldn't go is sent, plus postal is 50.

Seriously 50 is not a lot nowadays. Just slightly over 15mins of medical time.

From the VAT aspect I had heard the bigger practices are going to be shafted by VAT while us smaller ones ;-) won't and will consequently undercut you by at least 17.5% :-)

Didn't know it had started yet, I had thought it was in abeyance as HMG was having a rethink. There are many things one can call our government but fast ain't one of them!

pruritus
26-08-2006, 03:18 PM
Sorry Gary just reread your posting. I have not read the legal jargon. I have in the past been asked to justify my costs. Frankly that is pure cheek seeing as a solicitor doesn't get out of bed for less than 100 ;-)

However 15mins med time (45) plus admin costs (10) and postage and you can see 50 is <b>under</b>charging.

No problems and cheque usually in post from them pronto!

There is however another problem of the dead tree notes going off the premises. Different ball game IMHO. Some docs are not troubled by this some are. I didn't set the rules and run with the flow. So far no losses.

hina
15-09-2006, 12:07 PM
our secretary spends 80% of her time invoicing and photocopying, and i have to make trips to the postoffice at least once or twice a week for registering bulks of them. it's getting annoying!