PHIN’s data study will help doctors

By Olive Carterton

A new research project aims to give consultants more meaningful feedback about the work they do in private practice.

It will initially focus on three projects: patient reported outcome measures (PROMs), adverse events and the substitution of care between the public and private healthcare sector. 

The work is being carried out under a partnership between the Private Healthcare Information Network (PHIN) and the Depart­ment of Health Policy, London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE).

PHIN chief medical officer Dr Jon Fistein told Independent Practitioner Today: ‘Our partnership with LSE will allow us to adopt an academic approach and understanding to our data insights. 

‘This will strengthen our work, providing meaningful insights and feedback to consultants from their private practice data, as well as supporting the publication of fair and accurate performance measures on our website.’

The partnership – one of the first academic partnerships focusing on private provision of healthcare in the UK – will look at maximising the use of PHIN data for understanding the quality of care within sector. 

PHIN said the link-up would produce ‘high-quality and impactful research that will benefit patients and demonstrate the potential of the unique data PHIN holds to a wider audience.’ 

The partnership has begun with the secondment of a research officer from LSE to PHIN, Dr Michael Anderson, who is also a practising NHS GP and currently undertaking a PhD in health economics and health policy. 

Dr Anderson said: ‘There are only a few pre-existing studies which explore quality issues in the private healthcare sector in the UK, so this remains a gap in the literature and a relatively untapped area for health policy research. 

‘We are therefore very grateful to be one of the first research institutions granted access to PHIN data for this purpose.’