CQC Visits

By April 2013 all primary medical services were registered with the CQC and CQC monitoring of standards began. However following the first wave of practice inspections, the CQC announced in December 2013 they were amending their approach of inspecting and regulating all GPs and out-of-hours services.

You can read full details about the changes in the CQC’s document A fresh start for the regulation and inspection of GP practices and GP out-of-hours services.

Key changes

  • More systematic use of people’s views and experiences, including suggestions and complaints.
  • New expert inspection teams including trained inspectors, clinical input led by GPs and nurses, practice managers and GP Registrars.
  • A rolling programme of inspections carried out systematically in each clinical commissioning group (CCG) area across England.
  • Inspections of GP out-of-hours services to be incorporated into CCG area programmes.
  • A focus on how general practice is provided to key patient groups, including vulnerable older people and mothers, babies and children.
  • Tougher action in response to unacceptable care, including where necessary closing down unsafe practices.
  • Ratings of all practices to help drive improvement and support people’s choice of surgery.
  • Better use of data and analysis to help us to identify risk and target our efforts.
  • Clear standards and guidance to underpin the five key questions we ask of services: are they safe, effective, caring, responsive and well-led?
  • Close collaborative working CCGs and Local Area Teams of NHS England to avoid duplication of activity.

This new approach to inspections of GPs and GP out-of-hours started in April 2014.