You are here

CQC upgrade rating of Whitehaven GP Practice following a re-inspection

15 July 2016
Lowther Medical Centre
  • Media,
  • GP and GP out-of-hours services

The Care Quality Commission has found the quality of care provided by a Whitehaven GP practice to be Good following an inspection carried out earlier this year.

CQC undertook a comprehensive inspection of the Lowther Medical Centre, Whitehaven in March 2016. This was to check that the practice had taken sufficient action to address a number of significant shortfalls inspectors had identified during a previous CQC inspection in August 2015.

The key findings from the most recent inspection were as follows:

The practice had taken action to address the concerns raised at the comprehensive CQC inspection in August 2015. The practice had developed a clear vision, strategy and plan to deliver high quality care and promote good outcomes for patients. Inspectors could clearly see there was an open and transparent approach to safety and an effective system in place for reporting and recording significant events.

The practice had good facilities and was well equipped to treat patients and meet their needs; in addition information about services and how to complain was available and easy to understand. Improvements were made to the quality of care as a result of complaints and concerns.

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

Sue McMillan, Deputy Chief Inspector of General Practice in the North, said:

"It is clear that the Lowther Medical Practice has made a significant number of improvements since our original inspection. For example, at re-inspection we were satisfied that there were effective processes and systems in place to support patient safety including the dissemination of safety alerts to staff who worked within the practice, reporting of significant events and learning from them.

"With the support of NHS England and the local Clinical Commissioning Group, the practice has been able to make improvements, and is now providing a safe and clinically effective service.

"The practice is now providing a safe, caring, well-led and effective service. I am pleased to announce that Lowther Medical Practice is now rated as Good and I congratulate them on the progress that they have made.”


For further information please contact CQC Regional Communications Officer Kerri James by email or by phone on 07464 92 9966. 

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

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

Since October 2014, any GP practice that is found to be Inadequate on inspection will automatically be placed into special measures, opening the way to a package of support from NHS England. Within six months, CQC will carry out another comprehensive inspection. If the overall rating remains Inadequate, CQC will begin proceedings to cancel its registration, subject to the usual representations process.

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.