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Independents' Day

CQC to organise GP inspections differently in bid to improve relations with practices

The CQC is changing the way it organises its practice inspections, assigning a named lead inspector for each CCG area from October 2015 in a bid to improve the relationships between practices and inspectors.

The named lead inspector will carry out the majority of inspections in each CCG, and these will be scheduled throughout the year.

Practices receiving a routine inspection – rather than a surprise visit where problems have been identified – will still receive two weeks’ notice prior to a visit.

The previous model, where the inspectorate identified CCG areas it would be focusing on and teams aimed to visit around a quarter of practices within a roughly four-week window, has been deemed inefficient.

It was also believed that each batch of CCG visits would allow area specific trends or problems to be identified, discussed and acted on by CCGs.

CCG areas already scheduled to receive a batch of inspections will not see the changes introduced until January.

A CQC spokesperson said the scheme was being rolled out nationally after succesful pilots across England, adding: ‘This will help to build and develop local relationships and knowledge, spread the programme of inspection for a CCG area more evenly across each year, and enable CQC to plan more efficiently and effectively.’



Readers' comments (6)

  • too little too late

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  • Agree, TLTL. Abolish yourselves if you want to make our lives easier. You remember what it's like in the real world do you, Prof. Field?

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  • Doesn't sound like an improvement to me. If anything it's worse - one "area team lead" could destroy an entire CCG if he wants to. This often leads to various organization trying to soften them up which gives false sense of power.

    In fact, this is how China works and is thought to be the basis of corruption in the government.

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  • Vinci Ho

    Yes. It does sound like Mao's style :
    The United Front Work Department (統戰部)and its Unit leaders

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  • Can't see that this will make any difference at all to practices and I have zero interest in building and developing local relationships with CQC. Why don't they use genuinely "intelligent" monitoring to identify any at risk/struggling practices and direct supportive intervention accordingly? After all, shouldn't the point be to ensure safe practice, not to destroy it?

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  • A large group of local newspapers regularly makes available (on the websites of these newspapers) an on-line tool for ranking all the GP practices in Britain according to key responses in the National GP Patient Survey. One way of accessing this tool is at

    If you put in Steve Field's own practice (Bellevue Medical Centre) it is currently ranked as 6,843 out of 7,751 practices. The practice's score for patients' trust in the doctor that they see is especially low.

    'The mote in your own eye?'

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