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GPs have less confidence than other providers that CQC is useful

Nearly half of primary care workers feel the way CQC inspects and regulates doesn't improve the quality of care received by patients.

The CQC's annual provider survey, which questioned 2,636 primary care professionals, including 2,361 GPs, saw 48% answer ‘not beneficial’ when asked what extent they believe the way CQC inspects and regulates is beneficial to the quality of care received by people.

This was a 13% increase on last year and compared with just 8% of hospital providers and 7% of adult social care providers.

The survey also found that 50% of primary medical service professionals strongly disagree or disagree that CQC inspection reports provide information to help improve services. This is compared with 13% of secondary care trusts, and 10% of adult social care providers believing the same.

In response to the survey Dr Richard Vautrey, BMA GP committee chair, said the CQC must ‘make more progress reducing the level of bureaucracy that still remains at the heart of the inspection process’.

He added: 'GP practices are spending far too much time on pointless box ticking that adds nothing to improving the quality of care patients receive and in many cases actually drags them away from frontline patient care.'

The CQC said in its report that, for general practice, they are working with the GMC and NHS England to reduce ‘duplication of requests on providers, asking for information once, and using it many times’.

In the annual survey, the CQC also addressed a lack of consistency across inspections, ‘working with providers to understand more about their experiences of inconsistency’.

Professor Steve Field, chief inspector of general practice at the CQC, has previously said the watchdog is ‘not as consistent’ as it should be with some practices inspected with more leniency than others.

The CQC survey is changing for 2018, the CQC added, when only a 'representative sample', rather than all registered providers, will be questioned.

Readers' comments (6)

  • i wonder if our secondary care colleagues actually had to pay for this out of their pockets and spend weeks doing all the work for the trust if their views would change?

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  • Maybe hospital docs don't have to do it themselves either?

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  • 'A provider survey' will have been completed by the relevant manager. In hospitals and other services this will be someone with no idea about the impact of CQC on professionally run organisations. In many cases it will be someone who feels that they need to put the 'right' answer to continue their career.

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  • It seems to me to be actually detrimental because everybody is tied up preparing for it.

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  • The professor must now be really ashamed he is a GP, one that does not really sees patients. Yes you should be ashamed of not doing what you were trained to do.

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  • Not sure how CQC impose on secondary care during inspections. In GP I have found them trivial in outlook and burdensome in approach. The CQC staff explicitly describe themselves as 'permitting' our practice to continue. I have found them unashamedly arbitrary and capricious about the standards they set. I have yet to meet a GP colleague who sees them as having a positive impact. Some of their reports are manifestly grossly inaccurate. Culturally CQC seem adversarial and this undermines their ability to work as colleagues, build trust and achieve a useful purpose.

    I am sure as we evolve our understanding of quality assurance we will find a light touch low impact way to work. However CQC do not seem to be looking toward that goal.

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