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CQC is not muscling in on NICE over CVD

I would like to clarify some points made in your recent article 'Regulator warns GPs: follow cardiovascular rules or risk sanctions'.

The Care Quality Commission has recommended the Department of Health ensures data are collected on CVD prevalence and smoking at PCT and GP practice level. If the DH agrees with the recommendation, the information may be used to monitor GP practices' compliance with registration requirements. It will be for the NHS in its performance management role to use this information to improve performance locally.

Registration requirements are minimum legal standards. If the CQC did find GPs were not managing patients properly in relation to CVD, it would need to identify which registration requirements this related to and consider whether it constituted non-compliance.

The report does not only recommend tougher QOF targets but also that struggling practices should be given extra support to meet local need.

The article states the CQC 'appears to impinge on the remit of NICE to reshape the QOF'. Alongside other stakeholders, the commission has submitted its recommendations to NICE as part of its QOF consultation. This responds to NICE's remit and does not impinge upon it.

From Barbara James, senior strategic lead, public health and wellbeing, Care Quality Commission

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