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GP leaders brand chief inspector's comments 'baffling and offensive'

RCGP chair Dr Maureen Baker has hit back at claims that GPs have ‘failed as a profession’, calling the comments ‘baffling and offensive’.

She was not the only GP leader to react to an interview Professor Steve Field gave to the Daily Mail at the weekend, with the BMA issuing a statement arguing that it was the ‘ineffective’ CQC that needed to be reviewed.

The CQC’s chief inspector of general practice told the Mail that he was ‘ashamed’ at the poor care being provided by some of his GP colleagues, with some surgeries ’so bad we go to court the following day to close it down’.

Dr Baker said she was ‘in awe’ of how well practices were coping ’in the current climate.

She said via Twitter: ’Comments by Prof Steve Field baffling and offensive. I am in awe of how well most practices care for patients in current climate.’

She later added: ’Steve Field’s job is to find poor practices and deal with them. If doesn’t happen he should be ashamed of CQC not the profession.’

Meanwhile, the BMA pointed out that the CQC has a track record of inaccurately judging GP practices, bringing up the flawed risk-rating systems published by the regulator last year.

Its statement said: ’[T]he CQC inspection regime has been widely discredited as being unreliable, disproportionate, ineffective and drowning GP practices in pointless paperwork when they should be treating patients.

’The vast majority of GP practices provide a good or outstanding service to their patients despite being under unprecedented pressure from rising patient demand, falling resources and staff shortages.’

GPC member and Birmingham LMC medical secretary Dr Robert Morley also took to Twitter to express his concern at the comments.

He wrote: ’Even by CQC’s own appalling processes only 1/25 inspected practices in special measures yet chief inspector says general practice has failed!!’

GP Survival media lead Dr Zoe Norris tweeted: ’Look @CareQualityComm - this interview and the headlines? Really REALLY bad. As in, people need to resign bad. B-A-D.’

Meanwhile, the CQC has confirmed to Pulse that Professor Field was quoted accurately and it had not made any complaint about the Mail’s report of the interview. One CQC press officer tweeted the interview was ‘excellent’.

Readers' comments (34)

  • He needs to justify the whopping +500% increase in fees his orgsnisation are charging over the next two years to gp!
    Simples really

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  • From the heart of the RCGP, we welcome Dr Field's baffling and offensive comments.
    Now, back to knitting my cardigans.

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  • I AM ASHAMED OF PROFESSOR FIELD'S OFFENSIVE COMMENTS.
    DESCRIBING THEM AS AN OUTRAGE IS AN UNDERSTATEMENT.
    REMEMBER DURING YOUR OUTBURSTS "PROFESSOR", EVEN YOU ARE SUBJECT TO REGULATION AND SHOULD TRY TO REMAIN PROFESSIONAL AT ALL TIMES.

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  • Well at least he's succeeded in uniting the BMA and RCGP against CQC at last. Perhaps they can turn their outrage into positive action and actually FIGHT BACK ON OUR BEHALF.

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  • Rishabh Prasad

    Interestingly, he was given a prestigious award by the RCGP only a few weeks ago. I was in the audience, and you could feel the tension. I rather wonder if he has the courage to return it.

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  • Dear Prof Maureen, it is the RCGP's responsibility to make sure they do not appoint people to be their president or chair and then declare they are ashamed to be a GP. this indicate a weak leadership from the RCGP at the time when prof Field was the president.
    if any one failed the profession it is him

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  • Maureen, I remain sceptic.
    If you mean what you say be brave enough to withdraw all honours RCGP has bestowed upon this man suffering with galloping GEEPEEPHOBIA.

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  • Mathematically you cannot say GPs have failed as a profession if only 1/25 were poor by CQC standards. It really is a stupid remark. Obviously not Einstein.
    It is a pity we have to listen to such monstrous drivel from someone who patently does not understand simple arithmetic.
    I do not think we should have to listen to this mathematical dumbbell.

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  • Furthermore, if he expects 100 % of GPs to be perfect, he obviously has no understanding of simple statistics. If 100 % were perfect, he would be unnecessary as an entity.
    To tarnish an entire profession for a few poor doctors just reflects on Prof Field's IQ and knowledge of maths and probability, never mind distribution curves, mean and median etc.
    How did this guy become a professor? In what?

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  • Perhaps Prof Field should be stripped of his FRCGP.....symbolic but recognises the dis-service he has given the profession

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