One in six GP surgeries is failing

As reported this morning in the Daily Mail, the Care Quality Commission has identified 1,200 GP practices that are failing to provide patients with adequate levels of care. Having reviewed nearly all of the 8,000 GP practices in the country, against a measurement of 38 indicators, they placed 864 practices in the category of highest concern.

Prof Steve Field, CQC Chief Inspector, has called on GP practices that are putting patients at risk to improve dramatically, adding that many are ‘chaotic, have very poor leadership and a lack of learning culture’. Practices have been placed in a banding of six categories and of those in the top band it is estimated that 160 will have special measures put in place.

As part of the CQC’s ongoing monitoring, surgeries currently underperforming will undergo intensive spot-checks, with sanctions being imposed on those whose performance fails to improve. This comes at a time when the regulator has been increasingly called upon to review areas of poor medical practice, with the dataset helping to provide a targeted system of inspection.