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A faulty production line

Chief GP inspector set to leave CQC in March 2019

The CQC’s chief inspector of general practice is set to leave his position in March 2019 after five and a half years in the role.

According to the CQC, Professor Steve Field extended his term at the regulator by six months, having originally been expected to leave in October this year. 

Professor Field, who took on the role in October 2013, leads on the inspection of all providers of primary care services, including out-of-hours, online providers and prison health care.

However, since August 2017, he has also assisted in reviewing local systems, looking at hospitals, community services, ambulance services, care homes and residential care services, as well as GP practices.

CQC chief executive Ian Trenholm said: ‘I am extremely grateful to Steve for extending his term of office by six months until March 2019, and supporting me as I joined this important organisation – this has allowed us to progress much of the local system review work and speaks to Steve’s dedication to making sure people get the high-quality, compassionate care that they deserve.

Professor Field told Pulse earlier this year that ‘the amount of work we have been doing on local system reviews’, led him to give up his position as a practising GP at Bellevue Medical Centre in Birmingham.

He said at the time: ‘I have been focusing on making sure we get this important new approach right, where we take a wider view of the patient experience across a local health and care system.’

However, the CQC has faced accusations of bias in its practice inspections during his tenure after a Pulse analysis revealed that at least 60% of partners in ‘inadequate’ practices are BME

Meanwhile, Professor Field admitted at a conference late last year, that the CQC is ‘not as consistent’ as it should be with some practices inspected with more leniency than others.

The news comes after CQC board papers revealed that it has sought legal advice in a bid to expand its inspection remit to include a number of online GP providers, which are currently slipping through the net.

Readers' comments (29)

  • Vinci Ho

    Master Yoda
    May the farce be with you........🤪

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  • The man who is ashamed to be a GP will not be missed. I wonder who is next, for better or for worse.

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  • CQC has been an expensive catastrophe. He has no shame.

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  • I think one can be a bit more nuanced about his overall career with the CQC. We deceive ourselves if we overlook that there have been pockets of appalling practice which have now been remedied or removed. However he surely would have been more effective if he had conducted himself in a less aggressive, confrontational and combatative manner with us his colleagues (all in my opinion). Fewer would have resigned and I suspect with at least some collaboration with us he would he would be leaving the stage worthy of some palace recognition. He isn't.

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    The whippings will continue until moral improves..
    The chief whip is resigning...?

    It is perverse to set up a CQC to coincide with austerity and funding cuts.. which will inevitably cause quality to drop
    and then bully the inevitable outcome
    and then even worse to charge those organisations whose funding has been cut
    Civilised society??

    Why doesnt CQC inspect Capita
    their incompetence and delayed payments and withdrawal of payments are no doubt having a devastating effect on quality care provision

    Tough or poor quality
    Tough on the causes of poor quality ????

    Any way Prof Fields will be relived he no longer has to talk General practice every time he opens his mouth..

    Quango Quango Quango

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    Had to leave coal face gen prac for CQC work...
    Typical ivory tower mentality
    Appraise, commission, judge, bully
    Anything other than having to actually see patients ???

    Those who only work a couple sessions feel they can judge those taking the stress of full time work

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    I assume he will be returning to full time coal face Gen Practice?

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  • Congratulations to this top GP (I’m surprised you haven’t titled him as this pulse)

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  • What goes around comes around look what happened to Mr Lansley.The damage done to primary care by supposed top GPS has made the NHS a very unstable and dangerous lace for both professionals and patients.Not a record he should be proud of.

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  • Inspection is important but not in the heavy handed way brought about by cqc and their tick boxing processes. They take the opportunity to bully when they find minor errors that are easily correctable. Our adrenaline should be diverted towards patient care and not towards the day of inspection resulting in mountains of paperwork. I thought at one time it was going to be light touch but was disappointed it didn't become the case.

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