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Inspection carried out on 25/02/2020

During a routine inspection

We carried out an announced comprehensive inspection on 25 February 2020 at Harpenden Skin Clinic, Hertfordshire. This was part of our inspection programme, to rate independent health services throughout England.

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

The provider Harpenden Aesthetics Ltd provides private health care services to patients with skin conditions from the location Harpenden Skin Clinic, in Harpenden, Hertfordshire.

Harpenden Aesthetics Ltd is registered with CQC under the Health and Social Care Act 2008 in respect of some, but not all, of the services it provides. There are some exemptions from regulation by CQC which relate to particular types of regulated activities and services and these are set out in Schedule 1 and Schedule 2 of The Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2014. Therefore, we were only able to inspect the provision of services covered by CQC regulations during this inspection. These services include nurse led prescribed treatments for skin conditions such as Acne and Rosacea, and treatment of excessive sweating (Hyperhidrosis).

The clinic manager is the registered manager. A registered manager is a person who is registered with the Care Quality Commission to manage the service. Like registered providers, they are ‘registered persons’.

Registered persons have legal responsibility for meeting the requirements in the Health and Social Care Act 2008 and associated Regulations about how the service is run.

Our key findings were


  • Services provided were organised and delivered to meet patients’ needs.
  • Systems were in place to provide care in a way that kept patients safe and protected them from avoidable harm. At the time of our inspection, records of vaccinations in line with current Public Health England (PHE) guidance were not available for some non clinical staff. After our inspection the provider sent us documentary evidence that confirmed staff vaccinations had been updated.
  • There were quality improvement activities to review the effectiveness and appropriateness of the care provided.
  • Patient feedback highlighted a high level of satisfaction with the services received.

The areas where the provider should make improvements are:

  • Take action to ensure that staff vaccinations are maintained as per the Public Health England (PHE) guidance and the recently initiated Harpenden Skin Clinic health clearance, screening and immunisations policy.

Dr Rosie Benneyworth BM BS BMedSci MRCGPChief Inspector of Primary Medical Services and Integrated Care