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Table 2 Definition of the quality parameters

From: Quality of sickness certification in primary health care: a retrospective database study

Quality parameter Explanation
1. Number of days on the first sickness certificate during a sickness absence episode issued within the centre.1) This has been shown to be an important predictor of total length of the sickness absence period.
2. Proportion of sickness certificates issued on the basis of a face-to-face consultation between issuing physician and patient.2) Sickness certificates should in general be issued on the basis of a face-to-face consultation.
3. Proportion of non-specific diagnoses (ICD-10 R or ICD-10 Z) after 30 days of sickness absence.3) Non-specific diagnoses may be adequate during the first part of a sickness absence episode, but after 30 days the patient should have a specific ICD-10 diagnosis.
4. Proportion of sickness certificates with documented assessment of need/no need for vocational rehabilitation after 30 days of sick leave.3) After 30 days of sickness absence, the physician should make an evaluation of the patient’s need for vocational rehabilitation.
5. Proportion of sickness certificates with documentation about prognosis regarding scheduled time for return to work after 30 days of sickness absence.3) After 30 days of sickness absence, there should be an evaluation of the patient’s prognosis regarding return to work.
6. Proportion of completely filled in sickness certificates (13 specified fields of information filled in) after 30 days of sickness absence.3) This is a criterion required by the Social Insurance Offices.
7. Proportion of sickness certificates with the minimum amount of information filled in: medical history, examination and functional limitations.2) This is a criterion considered by the quality group as a minimum requirement for all sickness certificates.
  1. 1Based on the first sickness certificates issued in the PHCC during the actual sickness absence episode.
  2. 2Based on all sickness certificates;
  3. 3Based on the first sickness certificates issued after the first 30 days of a sickness absence episode.