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CQC rates Greater Manchester GP Surgery as Inadequate

17 September 2015
  • Media

England’s Chief Inspector of General Practice has rated a Greater Manchester GP surgery as Inadequate and placed the practice into Special Measures following an inspection by the Care Quality Commission.

A specialist team of inspectors rated the service provided by Dr Iain Hotchkies as inadequate for providing services that were safe, effective, responsive to people’s needs and well-led, and Requires Improvement for providing caring services.

Under CQC’s new programme of inspections, all of England’s GP practices are being inspected and given a rating. Overall, Dr Iain Hotchkies practice has been rated as Inadequate and placed in special measures.

The practice was inspected in July 2015 by an inspection team which included a lead CQC inspector supported by a GP and an expert by experience. A full report of this inspection has been published on the CQC website today.

Although inspectors received some positive comments from patients during the inspection who said that they were treated with dignity and respect by staff, inspectors also identified a number of significant concerns.

Staff were not encouraged to raise concerns, or to report incidents and near misses. As a result significant events were not being recorded correctly; reviews and investigations were not thorough and lessons learned were not communicated widely enough to support improvement.

Whilst staff demonstrated some understanding of safeguarding, inspectors were not provided with any evidence to indicate when the most recent safeguarding training had been undertaken. There were few opportunities for staff to engage with appropriate training to better support them or to further improve their knowledge.

The practice did not have robust systems, processes and policies in place to manage and monitor risks to patients, staff and visitors to the practice and inspectors identified concerns regarding medicines management.

The Care Quality Commission has identified a number of areas for improvement, including:

  • The practice must implement a process to review significant events annually and disseminate learning to practice staff.
  • The practice must ensure processes are in place to identify, assess and manage risks relating to health, welfare and safety of patients including ensuring that medicine management systems and appropriate infection control systems are brought in line with national guidelines.
  • Steps must be taken to ensure staff receive appropriate training, including safeguarding, specific to their role.
  • The practice must regularly obtain patients’ views and act on the feedback, including responses about accessing appointments, to improve the services provided.

CQC is working closely with South Manchester Clinical Commissioning Group and NHS England to support the practice while it addresses the issues identified by the inspection.

Sue McMillan, Deputy Chief Inspector of General Practice said:

“It is important that the people who are registered with Dr Iain Hotchkies’ practice can rely on getting the high quality care which everyone is entitled to receive from their GP.

“Failure to record and share learning from incidents is unacceptable and governance arrangements need to be strengthened to ensure effective systems are in place to regularly assess and monitor the quality of services provided. Immediate action must be taken in light of these findings so that people get safe, high-quality primary care.

“I do not believe that the practice is likely to resolve its challenges without external support. This is why we are placing the practice into special measures.

“After a period of six months we will inspect again to check whether sufficient improvements have been made. If we find that the service provided by this practice remains inadequate, we will consider taking steps to cancel its registration with CQC.”

Patients registered with the practices being 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.


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

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 about Dr Iain Hotchkies.

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 requirement for providers to prominently display their CQC ratings.