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CQC inspectors find Coniston Medical Practice in Cumbria to be Outstanding

16 July 2015
Coniston Medical Practice
  • Media

The Care Quality Commission has found the quality of care provided by Coniston Medical Practice, Cumbria, to be Outstanding following an inspection in March 2015.

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, which included a GP specialist advisor, rated the services provided by the Coniston Medical Practice as Outstanding for every population group they serve including older people, people with long-term conditions, families, children and young people, working age people, people whose circumstances may make them vulnerable, and those experiencing poor mental health.

A full report of the inspection has been published today.

The surgery provides services to approximately 950 patients.

The report highlights a number of areas of outstanding practice, including:

  • The surgery had developed a good reputation and was seen as an essential part of the local community. Staff regularly liaised with the local primary and secondary schools and were on call to provide advice on any health concerns. The practice could demonstrate how this helped to avoid unnecessary ambulance call outs and attendances at accident and emergency.
  • Arrangements were in place for the practice staff to accompany district nurses and carers with joint home visits. This provided patients with a more co-ordinated and multidisciplinary care service.
  • Both of the GPs lived above the practice and often treated people outside of normal opening hours, this further reduced the need for many patients to make an unnecessary journey to hospital, which is a considerable distance away.
  • The practice offered a range of compassionate services to address social isolation amongst its patient population.

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

“It is clear Coniston Medical Practice is providing an caring, effective and well led service which is highly responsive to the needs of the local community, and is a real asset to the people living in this part of the Cumbria.

“Feedback from patients was overwhelmingly positive. Patients told us they were treated with dignity and respect by the staff at the practice and that they were fully involved in their care and treatment decisions.

“We found that the practice displayed an excellent understanding of the differing needs of their patients and staff demonstrated a commitment to help and support them, often going above and beyond their level of duty to care for patients. We were particularly impressed by the way the practice engaged with local schools and acted as the first point of contact if students or staff had any health concerns.

“All of this hard work pays off in making a real difference to patients – which is why we have found this practice to be Outstanding.”


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

For media enquiries about the Care Quality Commission, please call the press office on 020 7448 9401 during office hours. Journalists wishing to speak to the press office outside of office hours can find out how to contact the team here. (Please note: the duty press officer 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 Coniston Medical Practice.

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.

To get to the heart of people’s experiences of care, we always ask the following five questions of services.

  • Are they safe?
  • Are they effective?
  • Are they caring?
  • Are they responsive to people’s needs?
  • Are they well-led?


For every NHS GP practice we will look at the quality of care for the following six population groups:

  • Older people
  • People with long-term conditions
  • Families, children and young people
  • Working age people (including those recently retired and students)
  • People whose circumstances may make them vulnerable
  • People experiencing poor mental health (including people with dementia)

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.