"CASH REMAINS KING"
We are sometimes asked why CPC/Qualicare provides access to low cost contracts, whilst we espouse the motto: “Cash is King”. Your IPA is a combination of 640 shareholders and members , each with their own interests, needs, patient profiles ,facilities and abilities. CPC/Qualicare may not act as a pressure group to influence commercial decisions by funders, in terms of the laws on competition and market dominance. As such , this IPA merely vets all contracts which are presented to us , and has the unenviable task of performing this same function nationally ,for IPAF as well. Only once a contract is fair to both sides, honest, open, devoid of catches and transparent, will CPC/Qualicare ( and therefore IPAF), comment that the contract has been vetted by us and is safe for signature by any willing providers. It is illegal for us to try to influence market forces and doing so, could attract sanction from the Competition Commission.
You will notice that we word all of our advisories that you should approach all contracts in terms of whether it fits your practice’s needs, requirement and capabilities.We leave the final decision to sign or not , to you.
It is however important to remember that any contract which reaches you without having come via the IPAF or via CPC/Qualicare, or not bearing our seal of quality, may well contain terms and conditions which are unfair, anti GP, and which you could regret at some time in the future when you try to interact with certain funders who are not GP orientated. As is the law, in RSA , you are free to sign or reject any contract. Do so in the knowledge that once IPAF or CPC/Qualicare has quality approved a contract, you will have channels with which to approach the funders and challenge their payment decisions, rejections, peer review decisions etc AND that you are, backed up and represented by your IPA. Thus billing problems, peer review decisions, clawbacks etc can all be challenged on your behalf by your IPA, whereas you are on your own when you sign unapproved contracts.
CPC/Qualicare will however never coerce you sign or not to sign.
Thus overall , we still hold the opinion that wherever possible : “Cash is King” . When this is not so, consider the next best thing, namely quality approved contracts via your IPA and IPAF. It makes sense ……..