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CQC inspectors find Castle Medical Group in Lancashire to be Outstanding

10 March 2016
The Castle Medical Group
  • Media,
  • GP and GP out-of-hours services

The Care Quality Commission has found the quality of care provided by The Castle Medical Group in Clitheroe, Lancashire, to be Outstanding following an inspection in January 2016.

Under CQC’s programme of inspections, all of England’s GP practices are being given a rating according to whether they are safe, effective, caring, responsive and well led.

The inspection team was led by a CQC lead inspector and included a GP, a member of the public with practice management experience as specialist advisors and an expert by experience. The services provided by The Castle Medical Group have been rated as Outstanding overall and Outstanding for providing services to the local population groups.

A full report of the inspection has been published today.

The surgery, operating at Clitheroe Health Centre on Railway View Avenue in Clitheroe, serves approximately 14,360 patients.

People told inspectors that they felt they were treated with dignity and respect by the practice staff and feedback about the service was consistently positive.

GP’s frequently visited a local boarding school to provide medical support to the resident children and carry out supervision and appraisals for the nurses at the school to ensure their competence and continued professional development.

The practice worked closely with other local GP’s and healthcare professionals to share best practice, the practice was proactive in gathering patient feedback and adapted the service when opportunities to improve where identified.

GP’s sought to deliver high quality, patient centred, care and treatment which was supported by all staff at the practice and promoted a good continuity of care.

Sue McMillan, Deputy Chief Inspector of General Practice in the North, said:

"We found that The Castle Medical Group was working hard to provide people with consistently high quality care and treatment and it is a real asset to the people living in this part of Lancashire.

“When we visited the practice we were particularly impressed with the joint working with other GP’s and healthcare professionals to ensure consistent high quality care was provided in the community but the collaborative work done to treat patients, who had a specific heart condition - atrial fibrillation, was outstanding. As well as the commitment of all staff to continuously seek improved outcomes for local people.

“The practice was clearly well thought of by its patients. We found The Castle Medical Group was performing highly in patient surveys about the care and treatment it provided, and people we spoke to said they were treated with respect, dignity and compassion.

“This is a great example of what outstanding care looks like.”


For further information please contact CQC Regional Communications Officer Mark Humphreys on 0191 233 3519 or 07881656012.

Journalists wishing to speak to the press office outside of office hours can find out how to contact the team here. Please note: the press office is unable to advise members of the public on health or social care matters. For general enquiries, please call 03000 61 61 61.

Last updated:
29 May 2017

Notes to editors

CQC has published a full report on The Castle Medical Group.

Since 1 April, providers have been required to display their ratings on their premises and on their websites so that the public can see their rating quickly and easily. Further information on the requirement for providers to prominently display their CQC ratings.

In July 2015 CQC launched a new online toolkit for GPs, featuring examples of outstanding practice that inspectors have found in GP surgeries across England. The toolkit, at, intends to provide real-world, illustrative examples of high quality general practice that other providers can refer to.

About the Care Quality Commission

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of health and social care in England.

We make sure health and social care services provide people with safe, effective, compassionate, high-quality care and we encourage care services to improve.

We monitor, inspect and regulate services to make sure they meet fundamental standards of quality and safety and we publish what we find to help people choose care.