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CQC takes action to protect patients through cancellation of Brighton GP practice registration
The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has taken urgent legal action to protect the safety and welfare of people by cancelling the registration of a GP practice in Hove following serious concerns about patient safety at the practice.
CQC’s decision to cancel the registration means that Goodwood Court Medical Centre can no longer legally provide primary medical services at the practice in Cromwell Road, Hove.
Inspectors took this action because they had serious concerns about the service and the risks to people using it.
CQC carried out an unannounced inspection at the surgery in June 2015 following information and concerns that had come to light about the service. This inspection identified serious concerns in relation to insufficient and inappropriately trained staff, out of date medicines and a backlog of requests for repeat prescriptions.
As a result, on Tuesday 9 June, CQC requested an urgent closure order (Section 30) from Brighton Magistrates Court which was granted.
The CQC’s Deputy Chief Inspector of General Practice, Ruth Rankine, said:
“The way in which Goodwood Court Medical Practice operated failed to meet the fundamental aspects of good care and treatment that people have the right to expect – high quality, compassionate and safe.”
“Enforcement action to close a service is not something that the CQC takes lightly. Where we find that patients are at significant risk, as we did in this case, we have no choice but to work with our partner agencies in order to take swift action to protect the safety and welfare of the public.”
“In this instance, given the seriousness of what we found on inspection, we are confident we took the right decision to protect people. When necessary, we will use our powers to do what it takes to make sure patients and the public are protected.”
The report from this inspection highlights a number of serious shortfalls that led to CQC using their urgent enforcement powers including:
- Patients were found to be at risk of harm because the practice had not provided enough suitably qualified staff to meet their needs. In some cases the correct recruitment checks on staff had not been undertaken prior to their employment. During the inspection CQC identified one locum staff member who had treated patients but could not provide evidence that they were medically qualified to do so.
- The management of medicines was found to be unsafe and placed patients at serious risk of harm. Medicines were found to be out date which rendered them unsafe. This also included requests for prescriptions which had not been processed in a timely manner to ensure patients had access to their medicines.
- Despite urgent appointments being available on the day they were requested, patients stated that they had to wait a long time for non-urgent appointments and found it very difficult to get through to the practice when phoning to make an appointment.
For further information please contact CQC Regional Engagement Manager John Scott on 07789 875809 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
CQC has published a full report about Goodwood Court Medical Centre.
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.
In July 2015 CQC launched a new online toolkit for GPs, featuring examples of outstanding practice that inspectors have found in GP surgeries across England. The tool intends to provide real-world, illustrative examples of high quality general practice that other providers can refer to. You can find the online toolkit for GPs at www.cqc.org.uk/outstandingprimarycare.