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Ealing GP practice rated Inadequate by CQC

23 March 2017
Northcote Medical Centre
  • Media,
  • GP and GP out-of-hours services

A GP practice in Southall, Ealing, west London, has been rated Inadequate overall by the Care Quality Commission.

Northcote Medical Centre in Northcote Avenue will now be entered into special measures and given assistance to help it improve. It was rated Inadequate for being safe, effective, caring and well-led. However, it was rated Good for being responsive to people’s needs.

Actions the practice must now take include:

  • It must record and investigate safety incidents thoroughly.
  • It must ensure all staff undertaking the role of chaperone have the required training and a DBS check.
  • Address concerns found with infection prevention and control.
  • Carry out regular checks on emergency equipment to make sure it is in good working order.
  • Develop a system to obtain patients views on improving the service and introduce an effective staff appraisal system.

The practice looks after around 1600 patients in an area of London where 90% of people are of Asian ethnic origin. Inspectors said that information about services was limited and not everybody would be able to understand or access it. For example, there were no information leaflets available in Punjabi or Gujarati despite there being a large number of patients from that patient population group on the practice list. Inspectors said the practice should provide practice information in appropriate

languages and formats.

Ursula Gallagher, CQC's Deputy Chief Inspector of General Practice said:

We are placing Northcote Medical Centre into special measures. Services placed in special measures will be inspected again within six months."

“The service will be kept under review and if needed could be escalated to urgent enforcement action. Where necessary, another inspection will be conducted within a further six months, and if there is not enough improvement we will move to close the service by adopting our proposal to remove this location or cancel the provider’s registration. Special measures will give people who use the service the reassurance that the care they get should improve."

“We were pleased, however, that patients were positive about their interactions with staff and said they were treated with compassion and dignity.”

Patients registered with the practices being placed into special measures should be aware that a package of support is offered by NHS England and the Royal College of GPs to ensure that there are no immediate risks to patient safety at these GP practices whilst improvements are being made.

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


For further information please contact Ray Cooling, Regional Engagement Manager (London), on 020 7448 9136 or call the press office on 020 7448 9401 during office hours. 

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Last updated:
29 May 2017

Notes to editors

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.