You are here


Inspection carried out on 6 February 2020

During a routine inspection

We carried out this announced inspection on 6 February 2020 under section 60 of the Health and Social Care Act 2008 as part of our regulatory functions. We planned the inspection to check whether the registered provider was meeting the legal requirements in the Health and Social Care Act 2008 and associated regulations. The inspection was led by a Care Quality Commission, (CQC), inspector who was supported by a specialist dental adviser.

To get to the heart of patients’ experiences of care and treatment, we always ask the following five questions:

• Is it safe?

• Is it effective?

• Is it caring?

• Is it responsive to people’s needs?

• Is it well-led?

These questions form the framework for the areas we look at during the inspection.

Our findings were:

Are services safe?

We found this practice was providing safe care in accordance with the relevant regulations.

Are services effective?

We found this practice was providing effective care in accordance with the relevant regulations.

Are services caring?

We found this practice was providing caring services in accordance with the relevant regulations.

Are services responsive?

We found this practice was providing responsive care in accordance with the relevant regulations.

Are services well-led?

We found this practice was providing well-led care in accordance with the relevant regulations.


Hexham Dental Clinic provides NHS and private dental care and treatment for adults and children. Treatments include dental implants and conscious (intravenous) sedation

There is level access to the practice for people who use wheelchairs and those with pushchairs. Car parking spaces are available near the practice.

The dental team includes six dentists, eight dental nurses, three dental hygienists, two receptionists and a practice manager. The practice has four treatment rooms.

The practice is owned by a partnership and as a condition of registration must have a person registered with the CQC as the registered manager. Registered managers have legal responsibility for meeting the requirements in the Health and Social Care Act 2008 and associated regulations about how the practice is run. The registered manager at Hexham Dental Clinic is the principal dentist.

On the day of inspection, we collected nine CQC comment cards filled in by patients.

During the inspection we spoke with two dentists, three dental nurses, one dental hygienist, one receptionist and the practice manager. We looked at practice policies and procedures and other records about how the service is managed.

The practice is open:

Monday and Tuesday from 8.30am to 5.30pm

Wednesday and Thursday from 8.00am to 5.30pm

Friday from 8.30am to 7.00pm

Our key findings were:

  • The practice appeared to be visibly clean and well-maintained.
  • The provider had infection control procedures which reflected published guidance.
  • Staff knew how to deal with emergencies. Appropriate medicines and life-saving equipment were available.
  • The provider had systems to help them manage risk to patients and staff.
  • The provider had safeguarding processes and staff knew their responsibilities for safeguarding vulnerable adults and children.
  • The provider had staff recruitment procedures which reflected current legislation.
  • The clinical staff provided patients’ care and treatment in line with current guidelines.
  • Staff treated patients with dignity and respect and took care to protect their privacy and personal information.
  • Staff provided preventive care and supported patients to ensure better oral health.
  • The appointment system took account of patients’ needs.
  • The provider had effective leadership and a culture of continuous improvement.
  • Staff felt involved and supported and worked as a team.
  • The provider asked staff and patients for feedback about the services they provided.
  • The provider dealt with complaints positively and efficiently.
  • The provider had information governance arrangements.

There were areas where the provider could make improvements. They should:

  • Take action to ensure ongoing fire safety management is effective.

Inspection carried out on 14 October 2013

During a routine inspection

We spoke with four people who had used the service and they were complimentary about the service they received. They said their privacy and dignity was always respected. Comments included, "They are pleasant and competent" and "Everything was discussed with me and I knew what to expect."

People we spoke with made positive comments about the treatment they received. They said their treatment and the procedures involved had been explained to them at each stage. Comments included, "They are very professional, I feel very lucky to have found such a lovely dentist" and "I have no doubts about their ability."

We found the staff were fully aware of infection control procedures and the premises were clean and hygienic. People told us they always found the clinic very clean.

We checked staff records and found these showed the provider had appropriate systems in place for the recruitment of staff.

The provider had systems in place to monitor the quality of the service provided and systems to protect people's health and safety.