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  • GP practice

Archived: Ambrose Avenue Group Practice

Overall: Good read more about inspection ratings

76 Ambrose Avenue, Colchester, Essex, CO3 4LN (01206) 549444

Provided and run by:
Ambrose Avenue Group Practice

Important: The provider of this service changed. See new profile
Important: We are carrying out a review of quality at Ambrose Avenue Group Practice. We will publish a report when our review is complete. Find out more about our inspection reports.

Latest inspection summary

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Background to this inspection

Updated 30 December 2021

Ambrose Avenue Group Practice is located in Colchester at:

76 Ambrose Avenue,



CO3 4LN.

The practice has a branch surgery at:

The Tollgate Health Centre,

145 London Road,




CO3 8NZ.

The practice offers services from both a main practice and a branch surgery. Patients can access services at either surgery. We visited Ambrose Avenue Group Practice location as part of this inspection.

The provider is registered with CQC to deliver the Regulated Activities; diagnostic and screening procedures, family planning, maternity and midwifery services, treatment of disease, disorder or injury and surgical procedures. These are delivered from both sites.

The practice is situated within the North East Essex Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and delivers General Medical Services (GMS) to a patient population of approximately 16,070. This is part of a contract held with NHS England.

The practice is part of The Colte Partnership, a group of nine GP practices across Colchester and Tending who work together to share workforce and expertise to ensure support and stability. The practice is also part of a Primary Care Network (PCN) of 3 GP practices called ARA. (Primary care networks are groups of practices who work together to improve primary care services).

Information published by Public Health England shows that deprivation within the practice population group is in the second highest decile (eight of ten). The lower the decile, the more deprived the practice population is relative to others.

According to the latest available data, the ethnic make-up of the practice area is 94.6% White, 2.7% Asian, 1.6% Mixed, 0.7% Black and 0.5% Other.

The practice team comprises five GP partners (three female and two male) and three salaried GPs (one female and two male). There are three nurse practitioners, two practice nurses and three healthcare assistants, a phlebotomist and one lifestyle coach. The team also includes two clinical pharmacists, a pharmacy technician and a care coordinator, who are employed through the PCN. There is a practice manager, finance and facilities manager, reception manager and administration services and patient liaison manager. They are supported by 33 administrative, data, prescription, secretarial and reception staff. All staff work across both sites.

Due to the enhanced infection prevention and control measures put in place since the pandemic and in line with the national guidance, most GP appointments were telephone consultations. If the GP needs to see a patient face-to-face then the patient is offered a choice of either the main GP location, the branch surgery or a home visit if necessary. The practice held an open access clinic at the branch site each weekday from 9am to 12 noon.

The practice is open from 8am to 6.30pm Monday to Friday at both the main location and the branch site. Appointments were available between 8:30am and 6:20pm. The practice telephone line is closed from 12.30pm and 1.30pm Monday to Friday, although emergency telephone calls were answered and responded to during this time.

Extended access is provided locally by The Colte Partnership. Appointments were available from 6.30pm to 8pm Monday to Friday and from 8am to 2pm Saturday and Sunday. The appointments were held at Rowhedge Medical Practice, The University of Essex Health Centre, Tiptree Medical Practice, Ambrose Avenue Group Practice at Tollgate, and Colne Medical Practice. Out of hours services are provided by Practice Plus Group, via the NHS111 service.

Overall inspection


Updated 30 December 2021

Letter from the Chief Inspector of General Practice

We carried out an announced comprehensive inspection at Ambrose Avenue Group Practice on 16 February 2016. Overall the practice is rated as good.

Our key findings across all the areas we inspected were as follows:

  • Patients were protected from abuse and avoidable harm as staff understood and fulfilled their responsibilities to raise concerns, and to report incidents and near misses.

  • Risks to patients were assessed and well managed. Information about safety was monitored, appropriately reviewed and addressed. Learning from incidents was cascaded to staff.

  • Staff assessed patients’ needs and delivered care in line with current evidence based guidance. There were multi-disciplinary team discussions to ensure patients’ care and treatment was coordinated.
  • Patients said they were treated with compassion and dignity and they were involved in their care and decisions about their treatment. Information about services and how to complain was available and easy to understand.
  • Patients said they could make an appointment with a named GP and that there was continuity of care, with urgent appointments available the same day.
  • The premises were purpose built and maintained to an acceptable standard throughout the clinical areas. Access for disabled people was in place including parking for the disabled and washroom facilities.
  • The practice implemented suggestions for improvements and made changes to the way it delivered services as a consequence of feedback from patients and from the patient participation group.
  • There was a leadership structure and staff had lead roles in the delivery of services.Staff were appropriately qualified and competent to carry out their roles safely and effectively in line with best practice. Staff were supported and received satisfactory supervision and appraisal and were encouraged to undertake their continual professional development.

The areas where the provider should make improvement are:

  • The practice should have a clear vision and strategy to deliver ongoing high quality care and promote good outcomes for patients. Staff should be clear about the vision and their responsibilities in relation to this.

  • There should be a formal policy and arrangements in place to ensure that MHRA medicine alerts are always actioned in a timely manner.

Professor Steve Field (CBE FRCP FFPH FRCGP) 

Chief Inspector of General Practice