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Rainham GP practice rated Inadequate by CQC

3 August 2017
Spring Farm Surgery
  • Media,
  • GP and GP out-of-hours services

A GP practice in Rainham has been rated as Inadequate overall by the Care Quality Commission.

Spring Farm Surgery in Upminster Road North in the London Borough of Havering, has been rated Inadequate for being safe, caring and well-led. It was rated Requires Improvement for being effective and responsive following the inspection in May 2017.

CQC issued an urgent suspension of the provider's registration for a period of six months to enable the provider to take action to improve while removing patients from the risk of harm. A caretaker practice has been identified by NHS England to provide care and treatment to patients at the practice during this period.

Inspectors found there was no evidence of learning and communication with staff.

The practice had failed to adequately review its ability to respond effectively in the event of an emergency or mitigate any risks associated with the absence of oxygen, adequate supplies of emergency medicine and a defibrillator.

The practice failed to mitigate the risks associated with fire. There was no testing of fire alarms or fire drills. Electrical safety checks had not been carried out on portable equipment.

Staff undertaking chaperone duties had not been trained. Also, the practice could not demonstrate that all staff had received mandatory training such as fire safety, basic life support, infection control and information governance. Appropriate recruitment checks had not always been undertaken prior to employment.

The practice did not have a patient participation group. However, patients were positive about their interactions with most staff and said they were treated with compassion and dignity.

Included in actions the practice must now take are:

  • Review the system for reporting, recording and sharing learning from significant events.
  • Ensure sufficient quantities of equipment or medicines to ensure the safety of patients and to meet their needs.
  • Ensure persons employed for the purposes of carrying on a regulated activity are of good character including by carrying out appropriate pre-employment checks for all staff.
  • Ensure learning from complaints is discussed, analysed and shared for the purposes of evaluating and improving the practice.
  • Ensure effective systems and processes are in place at the practice, in particular regarding vision and strategy, governance, staffing, practice policies, performance awareness, quality improvement, risk management and leadership.
  • Provide staff with appropriate support and training to carry out their duties.
  • Improve processes to support the seeking and acting on of feedback from relevant persons, including a patient participation group.

The areas where the provider should make improvement includes reviewing how patients with caring responsibilities are identified and recorded on the clinical system to ensure information, advice and support is made available to them. The practice should also consider how to assist patients with a hearing impairment accessing the service.

Professor Ursula Gallagher, CQC Deputy Chief Inspector of GP Practices, said: “On 23 May 2017 we took urgent enforcement action to suspend the providers of Spring Farm Surgery from providing primary medical services. We will inspect the practice again prior to the end of the six month suspension. A caretaker practice has been put in place by NHS England to provide primary medical services to patients during this period.

“It is always disappointing when we find ourselves in a position of having to take urgent action. This is particularly the case when patients essentially believe the care they have been receiving is safe and effective. By suspending the provider’s registration we are giving them the opportunity to improve the service and in time have their registration reinstated.”


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Last updated:
03 August 2017

Notes to editors

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.