You are here

What we will inspect: population groups (GP practices)

  • Organisations we regulate

As well as inspecting and rating GP practices for the key questions, we also inspect and rate six population groups.

We only give a rating for the population groups against the effective and responsive key questions. These two ratings will then be aggregated to reach an overall rating for these population groups.

Older people

This group includes all people in your practice population who are aged 75 and over. It includes those who have good health and those who may have one or more physical or mental long-term conditions.

It includes people who are living at home as well as those who are in a care home or a nursing home, where your practice provides general medical services to these people.

For this population group, an inspection will focus on the role of the GP practice in developing a proactive and personalised programme of care and support, which is tailored to the needs and views of older people registered with the practice.

People with long-term conditions

People with long-term conditions are those with an ongoing health problem that cannot be cured. Long-term conditions can be managed with medication and other therapies. Examples of long-term conditions are diabetes, cardiovascular disease, musculoskeletal conditions, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), long-term neurological disorders (such as epilepsy), HIV or cancers (this list is not exhaustive).

This population group does not include people with long-term conditions who are aged 75 and over as they are included in the older people population group. It does not include children or young people under the age of 18 with long-term conditions, as they are included in the families, children and young people population group.

Families, children and young people

This group includes expectant and new parents, babies, children and young people.

For parents, this includes expectant and new parents only, and includes prenatal and antenatal care and advice, where provided by the GP practice. We will consider the specific services that a practice provides, including whether it is registered with CQC to provide the regulated activity of maternity services, as this will influence the level of services a practice can provide to mothers. For children and young people, we will use the legal definition of a child, which includes young people up to their 18th birthday.

Working age people (including those recently retired and students)

This includes all people in your practice population who are of working age and those recently retired (up to the age of 75). Working age includes adults up to the age of 75, whether or not they are in employment. For example, it includes students aged 18 and over.

Inspections will include a focus on how people in this group are able to access appointments and services at the practice.

People whose circumstances may make them vulnerable

This population group may include a number of different groups of people. It includes those who live in particular circumstances that may make it harder for them to access primary care, or mean they are more at risk of receiving poor care. Some of these people may also be living in circumstances that make them vulnerable. We recognise that not everyone in this population group will consider themselves as being vulnerable.

We will determine which groups to focus on by looking at your practice’s population and your own assessment of the groups of patients that are most vulnerable, find it particularly difficult to access primary care, or are at risk of receiving poor care. However, we expect to always include:

  • people with a learning disability
  • people who are homeless

We may also include gypsies, travellers, vulnerable migrants and sex workers.

This is not an exhaustive list and you should determine which groups of people are most relevant in your practice population.

When we look at a group, inspectors will focus on access to general practice services generally, rather than the physical access to a practice for an appointment. This includes registration with a practice, and the ability to book appointments and receive services.

People experiencing poor mental health (including people with dementia)

This includes the spectrum of poor mental health, ranging from depression, including postnatal depression, to severe and enduring mental illnesses, such as schizophrenia. It also includes people with dementia.

Last updated:
26 February 2019