Orphan patient attachment fee

Orphan patient attachment fee

The orphan patient attachment fee provides a one-time payment of $150 for each new unattached patient taken into an eligible family physician's office practice, to improve access to primary care for Nova Scotians.

Program intentions

This investment is targeted for physicians who practice full-scope family medicine and who are responsible for the comprehensive and continuous care of their patients as described in the eligibility section below.

The program is available to Alternative Payment Plan (APP) and fee-for-service physicians for taking on patients from the 811 Find a Family Practice list as well as other patients who were previously unattached at the time they are enrolled or who may become unattached, such as patients referred from the Emergency Department and patients from a practice where the physician is retiring or relocating and who no longer have a family physician as a result of that change.

The expanded rules for the unattached patient bonus are effective April 1, 2018. These fees should be billed at the time of the initial visit.

These fees cannot be claimed if you are a new physician still building your practice (see FAQ for more information).

Incentive payment eligibility

Alternative Payment Plan (APP) and fee-for-service family physicians who are practising comprehensive and continuous family medicine are eligible for the fee for each patient you take on who does not have a family doctor.  

  • For enrolling patients on the 811 list
  • For enrolling patients referred from the Emergency Department or attaching to a family physician as part of a planning process associated with an inpatient discharge who were previously unattached at the time they were enrolled
  • For enrolling patients who do not have a physician or are unattached at the time of enrollment
  • For enrolling patients for whom unattachment is imminent because their family physician is retiring/relocating and no new family physician is taking over their practice

Ineligible for fee

  • Walk-in clinics
  • For patients who already appear on a physician's patient list (initial or physician validated)
  • For patients who were taken off the 811 list before the establishment of this fee enhancement (i.e. retroactive payment)
  • New physicians who are building their practices until that point when their patient panel reaches 1350.

All eligibility criteria pursuant to the previous Orphan Unattached Patient Bonus will be removed, except for the requirement for the physician to maintain that patient in their practice for a minimum of one full year prior to claiming the fee.



Jessica Moore
Compensation manager, Master Agreement and Fee Schedule
1-800-563-3427 ext. 4922