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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)

  • Just pretend to up standards without considering the workforce issues.
    Fellow GPs, you've seen it now. Do not work in staff shortage areas as you will be hung out to dry for helping.
    I wonder how many face to face sessions Dr Benneyworth has done to come up with this. A critical friend my foot.
    How would a GP who needs to see 40 patients a day be able to help another GP who need to see 40 patients too if they have to waste time on the CQC and useless meetings? I have already dropped sessions and I cannot wait to retire. Or wait....perhaps I might just stop seeing patients and join the CQC and come up with rubbish like this but no, I have too much self respect to do this to my colleagues.

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  • AL "4 TRIES IN ONE GAME" BUNDY

    I am actually glad the CQC exists
    Some places the service is stretched too thin
    single nurse practitioner most of the week
    visits waiting days
    This makes a locum at these places even more high risk
    e consults and telephone triage
    pretends to address the demand
    but without good notes
    compounds the lack of continuity
    and the eventual risk of an adverse outcome

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  • CQC has a place but not without being realistic of the working environment and resources.
    Mass privatization will solve the funding issues and control demand and workload. We will not need to do QoF, can refer and use what ever drugs we want and get our professional freedom back and actually do a proper job without all the constraints and blame. No more bad parenting consultations, no more attention seeking personality disorder problems, social problems, fibromyalgia, child protection (not sure what you can really do in 10min when social services fail having days) etc. Even if they present, you have more time. Breath of fresh air. People will actually appreciate a GP.

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  • Just ludicrous comments.

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  • AL "4 TRIES IN ONE GAME" BUNDY

    I am actually glad the CQC exists
    Some places the service is stretched too thin
    single nurse practitioner most of the week
    visits waiting days
    This makes a locum at these places even more high risk
    e consults and telephone triage
    pretends to address the demand
    but without good notes
    compounds the lack of continuity
    and the eventual risk of an adverse outcome

    And in some places there is a
    mysterious notional corporate gp only
    who like the scarlet pimpernel
    is never actually seen
    (you know who you are... )

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  • AL "4 TRIES IN ONE GAME" BUNDY

    Bawa Garba
    did not have any defence with poor staffing funding etc
    when an adverse outcome occurs it
    the scapegoating will begin..
    and its usually the last person involved

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  • First of all I still don't understand why we have to pay CQC fees if their job is to protect patients . Government and patients can pay for CQC fees .
    Secondly if CQC does not want to make concessions for lack of Gp then let GP surgeries close their list so that those surgeries can look after their current patients properly . Those patients who cannot register with Gp can visit their MP and ask for more new practices to be opened .
    Enough of CQC and politicians treating like doormat.

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  • YOUR PROFESSION NEEDS YOU! DO YOU KNOW ANYBODY WHO WORKS FOR THE CQC? STOP THEM! ARMAGIDEON TIME.

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  • This is all part of the establishment plan unfortunately - defund and demoralise a public service until the public finally accept "privatisation" as a remedy; and the establishment fat cats make a killing.
    Mass resignation would certainly bring things to a head quickly, and government is weak at the moment; however, the profession would need a list accepted by the profession, of firm and united ideas on what it wants in order to subvert a mass resignation demand.
    The government has always used divide and conquer tactics very successfully.
    Are we sufficiently united and determined? I don't think so; I think still too many are tied into punitive mortgage and leased premises and are scared in losing their "job security" regards the future.
    However, they say that drastic times call for drastic measures.

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  • @ KeepThe RedFlagFlying | Locum GP26 Oct 2019 11:59am

    ‘’divide and conquer tactics’ have indeed traditionally been used to overcome one’s adversaries and it would seem that recent governments have repeatedly employed this tactic against the medical profession. The government however have made a bad tactical mistake. There never was a politically unified medical profession in the UK (and likely never will be), to divide and conquer, so individual doctors just made their own personal decisions and RLEed. Not necessarily the ‘planned’ result and is likely to turn out very expensive for the pursuers.

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