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CQC inspectors place Dorset GP practice into special measures

7 November 2016
Herbert Avenue
  • Media,
  • GP and GP out-of-hours services

England’s Chief Inspector of General Practice has placed Herbert Avenue in Parkstone, Poole into Special Measures following an inspection by the Care Quality Commission in July 2016.

Inspectors rated the service as Inadequate for being safe and well-led, Requires Improvement for being effective and responsive to people’s needs, and Good for being caring

A full report of this inspection has been published today.

Ruth Rankine, Deputy Chief Inspector of General Practice CQC’s South region said:

“Herbert Avenue did not have a clear leadership structure in place to deliver high quality care which everyone is entitled to receive from their GP practice.

“Patients were at risk of harm because systems currently in place were not embedded well enough to keep them safe. For example, opportunities to learn and improve from incidents and concerns were missed.

“For this and other areas of concern we are placing the practice into special measures - so opening the way for the practice to receive support from NHS England among others.

“We will continue to monitor this practice and we will inspect again in six months to check whether improvements have been made. If we find that the service remains inadequate, we will consider taking further enforcement action.”

Key findings from inspectors included:

  • Staff did understand their responsibilities to raise concerns and incidents, but reviews and investigations were not thorough and communication with staff was limited.
  • Patients were at risk of harm as the service had not taken adequate steps to keep them safe. Concerns were identified with the fire, safety, and infection control.
  • Staff were not up to date with relevant training and policies including, national patient safety alerts and safeguarding children and vulnerable adults.
  • Management had not followed basic recruitment guidelines and chaperones had not been checked through the disclosure and barring service and some nurses were not registered with the appropriate body.


For further information please contact CQC Regional Engagement Officer Farrah Chandra on 07917 594 574 or, for media enquiries, 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

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).

Providers are 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.