You are here

CQC inspectors place Central London GP practice into special measures

4 February 2016

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has placed the St Philips Medical Centre, in Westminster, Central London, into special measures following an inspection in November 2015.

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

The full report of the inspection has been published on the CQC website.

The St Philips Medical Centre provides primary medical services to 12,100 patients within the London borough of Westminster. Inspectors found that the practice was Inadequate for the provision of services that were safe, effective and well-led, and Required Improvement in order to provide services that were responsive and caring.

The systems and processes to address risks were not implemented well enough to ensure patients were kept safe. There were deficiencies in the systems and training processes for safeguarding, infection control, medicines management, dealing with medical emergencies and ensuring the safety of equipment. Staff who acted as chaperones were not trained for the role and the appropriate checks had not been undertaken to ensure that they were able to have contact with children or adults who may be vulnerable.

Although the practice carried out investigations when there were unexpected safety incidents, there was no available evidence to demonstrate that lessons learned from incidents and complaints were communicated throughout the practice to ensure that safety was improved.

There was limited evidence to demonstrate that the practice was auditing patient outcomes to drive improvements in practice performance.

However, patients told inspectors that they had positive interactions with staff and that they were treated with compassion and dignity.

Ursula Gallagher, Deputy Chief Inspector of General Practice said:

"When we are faced with a provider that is experiencing difficulties in providing adequate care for patients, our first instinct is to work with them to ensure that patient care improves.

“I am hopeful that the St Philips Medical Centre will take the necessary action to address the concerns we have identified during this inspection.

“In particular, the provider must ensure that appropriate systems are put in place to reduce risks to patients, in particular to improve safeguarding, infection control and medicines management. Appropriate processes must also be introduced to ensure consistent learning from incidents and complaints in order to improve patient safety.

“We will re-inspect within six months to check whether sufficient improvements have been made. If sufficient improvements have not been made and there remains a rating of inadequate for any key question or overall, we will take further action which may include closure.”


For further information please contact Yetunde Akintewe, CQC Regional Engagement Manager, on 07471 020 659. For media enquiries, journalists wishing to speak to the press office outside of office hours can find out how to contact the team here. For general enquiries, please call 03000 61 61 61.

Last updated:
29 May 2017

Notes to editors

CQC has published a full report about St Philips Medical Centre.

Patients registered with practices which are placed into special measures should be aware that the package of support being offered by NHS England and the Royal College of GPs will ensure that there are no immediate risks to patient safety at these GP practices whilst improvements are being made. This does not mean that these practices will close.

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).

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 display of CQC ratings.

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.