Calculating Quality Reporting Service (CQRS) and Quality Outcomes Framework (QOF)

Version 1.2 27 April 2023

This guidance is part of the Patient record and information systems’ functionality section of the Good practice guidelines for GP electronic patient records.

The Calculating Quality Reporting Service (CQRS) is an approvals, reporting and payments calculation system designed for GP practices.  The system is operated on behalf of NHS England (NHSE) by the commissioning support unit (CSU) collaborative.  It provides the means for general practices and primary care networks (PCN) to track, monitor and declare achievement of the services delivered by primary care.

There are two separate systems:

  • a national service (CQRS national)
  • a local service (CQRS local)

CQRS national

For CQRS national, NHS England and the English General Practitioners Committee  (GPC England) of the British Medical Association (BMA) consult on the GP contract on an annual basis.  Following these consultations, the final service information is made available on the CQRS system and offered out to general practices to accept, where this option is available.  Enhanced services (nationally agreed voluntary service programmes) which practices can choose to sign up to and deliver are also included. 

Some services are automatically accepted on behalf of a service provider where their agreement is subject to membership of another organisation (for example, some PCN services).

CQRS local

CQRS local has been developed by the commissioning support units (CSU) collaborative as a claim management system to support the introduction of local schemes between NHS commissioners and primary care providers.  It is set up for local enhanced services (LES) and local incentive schemes (LIS).  Access to CQRS local is via a username and password.

Data is submitted in the same way as manual CQRS national claims and is not automatically extracted from the clinical system. 

Evidence of achievement can be uploaded to support claims and progress of the claim can be tracked via the system. 

Data collection in CQRS

The General practice extraction service (GPES) collects information for a wide range of purposes, including providing general practice payments.  It works with the CQRS and GP IT clinical systems as part of the general practice collections service.

For all services built to extract data through GPES which have been accepted by general practice, NHS Digital collects data from participating general practices and publishes this monthly, broken down by sub-integrated care board (ICB) area.  CQRS national calculates a ‘quality service achievement’ based on the data it receives, and appropriate payments are made.

Data not available for collection by GPES are entered manually into the CQRS.

Information collected is used to track and manage general practice performance against various targets and enhanced services specifications set out by NHSE.

Data is used to help track:

  • The Quality and outcomes framework (QOF) – a system for the performance management and payment of general practices in the NHS in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.  Its objective is to improve the quality of care provided to patients by rewarding practices for performance based on several indicators across a range of key areas of clinical care and public health.
  • Directed enhanced services (DES) including the Investment and impact fund (IIF) – the main funding for primary care networks (PCN) outside the core contract offered to all general practices who have signed up to be part of a PCN. The funding aims to support expansion of the primary care workforce with resources shared across the network and the delivery of a range of services to patients.
  • Vaccination and immunisation (V&I) – delivered within the GP contract as essential care to meet the needs of a changing population by improving care outside hospitals and taking a proactive approach to managing population health. Data to calculate payments is collected as a GPES extract through CQRS.
  • The GP workload tool – information and data from general practice appointment systems is collected to support the NHS Long Term Plan, the General Practice Forward View and allows national analysis of general practice access/waiting time standards and/or utilisation.
  • The National diabetes audit – introduced to specifically measure the quality and effectiveness of diabetes care against the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) clinical guidelines and quality standards for adults.

Services managed within CQRS national

Services which generate a payment and those which do not generate a payment vary from year to year.  Further information is available on the CQRS website.

Access to CQRS

Sign-in to the CQRS login page is facilitated using an individual’s NHS mail account or via a system-specific username and password login.

Organisations will have self-managed, role-based, access to CQRS via an assigned administrator who will be able to authorise the accounts of other users in their organisation. 

Access levels can be set by the local administrator.  See CQRS user guides for more information on how to set up user profiles.

Training and support

Training materials and user guides can be accessed as an online training resource. Users do not need a login to access the training portal, CQRS training.

User support is available through a central service desk providing support to both CQRS local and CQRS national:  

Other helpful resources