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CQC inspectors place Oxfordshire GP practice into special measures

26 June 2017
Horsefair Surgery
  • Media,
  • GP and GP out-of-hours services

England’s Chief Inspector of General Practice has placed Horsefair Surgery in Banbury, Oxfordshire into Special Measures following an inspection by the Care Quality Commission in May 2017.

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

A full report of this inspection has been published on our website.

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

“Our inspectors had previously carried out an inspection at Horsefair Surgery in August 2016 where the service was rated as Requires Improvement. This inspection was meant to be a focus on the work the practice had carried out since that first visit."

“It is worrying that despite the concerns and improvements identified at that first inspection, our team found a decline in the standards upon their return. Patients were at risk of harm because systems currently in place were not embedded well enough to keep them safe. For example, staff had not received adequate training and support to deliver safe care and patient’s medications were not being reviewed to ensure they were safe to continue with their prescriptions."

“While improvements have been made since our last inspection, there are still areas of concerns with the level of care and treatment patients receive. This put people using the service at risk of not receiving the high quality care, which everyone is entitled to receive from their GP practice."

“With this in mind we had no option but to place the practice into special measures."

"We will re-inspect the practice within six months to check whether sufficient improvements have been made. If we find that the service provided by this surgery remains inadequate, we will not hesitate consider further enforcement action."

Key findings of CQC’s inspection included:

  • Medicines were not recorded in an accurate and timely manner. This included the review of patient’s medicines.
  • Staff had not completed the necessary training related to their roles and appropriate records were not kept to monitor training.
  • The quality and safety of services were not adequately monitored to provide the safe care and treatment.
  • Policies and procedures were available but were not organised in a way that ensured the right information was available for staff to follow.
  • Patients were at risk of harm because systems were not in place to safely care and improve patient outcomes for those with long term conditions.


For further information please contact CQC Regional Engagement Officer Farrah Chandra on 07917 594 574. 

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:
26 June 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. 

Under CQC’s new programme of inspections led by Professor Steve Field, Chief Inspector of General Practice, all of England’s GP practices are being inspected and given a rating.

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 and out-of-hours service, 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.

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.