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CQC chief executive to step down this summer

Sir David Behan has announced his intentions to step down as chief executive of the CQC later this year. 

Sir David will continue his role at the CQC until summer to allow a smooth hand over, and to give enough time for the appointment process for the new successor .

He has been at the CQC for six years, and has worked in health and social care for 40 years.

The chief executive has overseen the introduction of inspections for GP services, including the ratings system which sees practices being given ratings of ‘outstanding’, ’good’, ‘requires improvement’ and ‘inadequate’.

He said: ‘It’s been an immense privilege to serve the public by leading CQC, and I am incredibly proud of what we have achieved. We’ve inspected every hospital, adult social care provider and GP practice in the country – over 28,000 services and providers – and in the process developed a baseline on quality that is unique anywhere in the world’.

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‘I now feel it’s time to move on, to make a contribution in a different way and to allow someone else to lead the organisation to the next stage of its development.’

Health secretary Jeremy Hunt called Sir David an ‘exceptional leader’ and said he would be ‘sorely missed’.

He added: ‘we are lucky to have had him at the helm at such a transformational period in the regulator’s history. He is highly respected across the sector for his wisdom, drive and fearless determination to put patients first. He deserves great credit for overhauling healthcare regulation in this country to put quality and safety at the heart of the ratings system’.

Sir David earlier this month announced the suspension of CQC inspections for practices who have been rated ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ in January to ease workload pressures.

Sir David was awarded a knighthood for services to health and care in the 2017 New Year’s Honours list. He was presented with a City and Guilds fellowship in October 2016. In 2004, he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Law by Greenwich University and, in 2003, a CBE.