Letter from the Chief Inspector of General Practice
This practice is rated as Good overall. (Previous inspection 26/08/2015 – Good)
The key questions are rated as:
Are services safe? – Good
Are services effective? – Good
Are services caring? – Good
Are services responsive? – Good
Are services well-led? - Good
As part of our inspection process, we also look at the quality of care for specific population groups. The population groups are rated as:
Older People – Good
People with long-term conditions – Good
Families, children and young people – Good
Working age people (including those recently retired and students – Good
People whose circumstances may make them vulnerable – Good
People experiencing poor mental health (including people with dementia) - Good
We carried out an announced comprehensive inspection at Acorn Practice on 14 November 2017 as part of our inspection programme.
At this inspection we found:
- The practice had clear systems to manage risk so that safety incidents were less likely to happen. When incidents did happen, the practice learned from them and improved their processes.
- The practice employed a care coordinator and made use of social prescribing to provide effective support to frail elderly patients. Social prescribing is a way of linking patients in primary care with sources of support within the community. It provides GPs with a non-medical referral option that can operate alongside existing treatments to improve health and well-being.
- The practice fully engaged with programmes developed in the local area to support patient’s health and wellbeing in a number of different ways. For example, an art group for cancer survivors.
- The practice routinely reviewed the effectiveness and appropriateness of the care it provided. It ensured that care and treatment was delivered according to evidence- based guidelines.
- Staff involved and treated patients with compassion, kindness, dignity and respect.
- Patients found the appointment system easy to use and reported that they were able to access care when they needed it.
- Services were tailored to meet the needs of individual patients and delivered in a way that ensured flexibility and choice. For example, the practice worked collaboratively with local practices to set up a travel clinic which was accessible to the entire locality and also delivered a sexual health clinic at the practice for the locality.
- There was a focus on continuous learning and improvement at all levels of the organisation.
We saw two areas of outstanding practice:
- A GP had undertaken additional training in drug and alcohol misuse in order to better support patients where there was a need. The GP had also become a mentor for others wishing to gain certification for working in substance misuse . The practice ran a substance misuse service for patients registered with them and the adjoining practice. It was the only practice in Gloucestershire to offer this service to patients.The practice worked effectively with specialist workers who also consulted with patients at the practice. Routine screening and vaccination was offered and the practice worked collaboratively with the local pharmacists.
- Due to the rurality of Dursley, access to family planning clinics was difficult for local residents. A GP from the practice worked with a nurse practitioner employed by the other practice in the building, to deliver a sexual health clinic for the whole locality including patients registered at other practices.
The area where the provider should make improvements:
- The practice should ensure that actions are taken to improve patient feedback.
Professor Steve Field (CBE FRCP FFPH FRCGP)
Chief Inspector of General Practice