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CQC chief inspector: no 'concessions' will be made for GP capacity issues

Exclusive The CQC is 'not going to be making any concessions' for GP practices during inspections, despite acknowledging the pressures facing the sector, the watchdog’s new chief inspector of primary care has said.

Earlier this month, in its annual report on the state of health and adult social care in England, the CQC said that a 'large group of GP practices' have deteriorated to a lower rating due to 'ongoing capacity pressures'. 

But in an interview with Pulse, Dr Rosie Benneyworth, CQC chief inspector of primary medical services, revealed the regulator would not be loosening its approach to regulation.

Instead the CQC will be focussing more on how practices work with other services in their area because this could help to solve some of the pressures facing GPs, she said.

Dr Benneyworth said she wants GPs to see the CQC as a ‘critical friend’ that can ‘put a mirror up’ to practices to show where improvements are needed.

She said: 'We’re not going to be making concessions, ultimately our purpose is to ensure that patients get high quality and safe care.

'We know that practices are under huge demand and that’s making it very challenging. 

'But we are seeing different practices in different parts of the country really address those challenges by remodeling what they’re doing within their practice, working in conjunction with partner agencies across the local area, thinking about what their population needs are and how they can respond to those.'

She added: 'The thing that we’re already starting to test out, but we’re looking at how we can expand, is actually when we look at our inspection's key lines of enquiry, how much are people working in partnership with other organisations around them?'

Dr Benneyworth said in particular health services working with social care organisations was 'crucial'.

She added: ‘Where I’d like to get to is that we are seen as part of the solution to practices improving - that we’re able to be seen as a critical friend who goes in, who can actually put a mirror up to the practice and help them identify where their priorities for improvement should be.’

Meanwhile, she said the CQC’s new approach of phoning highly-rated practices every year instead of inspecting them as often had helped to ‘build relationships between inspector and practice’.

She said: ‘It started to enable our inspectors to have a much better understanding of the context and the changes that are happening within the local area and within the practice. And it’s hopefully going to breakdown some of those barriers between the CQC and practices going forward.’


Readers' comments (51)

  • resign - preferably en bloc in the same surgery. come to locumland where all is rosy. none of this shit. work flat out when you're in work - then go home. limit your hours to whatever you are comfortable with. i did this in 2006 and it saved my sanity !

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  • Actually I wonder if the same team (i.e HSL / RCGP) who brought us Chocolate coins and scribbling pads to cope with the stress induced by the incessant supply demand mismatch will try to advise GPs to 'self-refer' for social prescribing as the panacea to all our ills rather than actually doing anything practical about the whole situation?
    Anyone who pays RCGP subscriptions really needs to get their life in perspective.....

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  • Just awful. I don't want a critical friend thank you very much. I want an adequately funded environment in which to practice professionally.
    It took some time to slay the GMC and like the Hydra we are faced with another head to lop off. Anybody who works for this detestable organisation should be ashamed and resign forthwith.

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  • The said part is the she can write such ill advised bilge.

    Concession isn’t the exact wording just an understanding and empathy and practical nouse around the current work place.

    With that in mind lack of CPR equipment is likely more important than a tap running protocol? From a true example locally and my “nouse” tells me which ranks higher?

    Perhaps she needs to look and reflect on “responsive” and “respect”

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  • Dear policenthieves..... unfortunately the GMC has not yet been slayed..... it merely retreated for a while.....

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  • Can’t hire another GP because the job is so crap? Keep getting patients allocated and workload dumped? Your fault- you should be working more in collaboration.....blah blah

    We should resign. On mass. And sell our services back... just like lots of consultants are doing

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  • Well. What would you expect from a bunch of cowardly arselickers who can't do the day job and whose sole purpose is to look after number 1.
    Mirror? If you put a mirror up in front of Dr Bennyworth do you think she might see a reflection? If she thinks that actively destroying the NHS in the way the CQC is going about it, is going to help patient care then she clearly is no longer a Dr in any real sense of the word.
    If your ultimate aim is to get patients high quality and safe care then take the lack of resource upstairs, CQC. But of course you won't will you?
    Rant over.
    Let the beatings continue until morale improves...

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  • deluded. replacing GPs with noctors is NOT the answer as she may suggest, it may be cheaper short term but in the long term it will cost more as every research paper shows. having trained ANPS, they may be fantastic but they don't have our level of training. it is a false premise to subject such staff to our workload pressures - you will burn them out too and far quicker. any suicide - nurses suicide rates are increasing as well - will be on their heads. i though the NHS was trying to change to be non bullying and more supportive - guess CQC missed that bulletin. shameful

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  • I did want to continue the job I used to enjoy but CQC just keep bringing my early retirement ever closer by their unrealistic expectations.

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  • ‘- it is a simple, although appalling, truth that the Health and Social Care Act 2012 marked the end of the NHS.
    Perhaps the most atrocious betrayal of all came from an unexpected quarter – the medical profession. The British Medical Association pursued a policy of appeasement, which rendered it guilty of a crime of quite astonishing proportions: the death of a health system...etc
    Prof Raymond Tallis

    One might add that devaluing scientific medical knowledge to below that of opinionated humanities concepts and foreign commercial interests, was never going to end well.

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