CQC should be scrapped and funding moved to core services, say LMCs

The CQC should be scrapped and its funding diverted to core NHS services, GP leaders at the LMCs conference have said.

Dr Grant Ingrams: warned of impact of CQC inspections on practices (Photo: JH Lancy)
Dr Grant Ingrams: warned of impact of CQC inspections on practices (Photo: JH Lancy)

LMC representatives backed a motion deploring 'the bureaucratic and incompetent nightmare of the CQC', and demanding 'that it is decommissioned forthwith and that the funding is reinvested in frontline services'.

Proposing the motion, GPC’s Dr Grant Ingrams blasted the CQC as an ‘incompetent, bullying, bureaucratic waste of time’ that was damaging the profession.

He cited the infamous ‘maggot’ incident and its controversial intelligent monitoring system as examples of how the regulator had 'denigrated' the profession and repeatedly failed to learn from its mistakes.

CQC risk rating

On concerns at a negative risk rating for his practice under the monitoring system that was later adjusted, he said: ‘At the time I had various conversations with the CQC which was adamant it had done nothing wrong. By the time we received an apology, it was too little too late.’

He said it cost in the order of £6,000 for a single CQC appraisal – meaning millions of pounds had been squandered on inspections so far. ‘Think about what you could achieve with that money,’ he said. ‘At a time of austerity, they should be cut.

‘They manage in other countries without the CQC, and we managed without here before.’

GPC negotiator Dr Paul Cundy spoke at length against the CQC. He suggested that the motion did not go far enough. ‘They should be taken out into a field and mercifully dispatched,’ he said.

Dr Chris Hewitt from Leicestershire LMC questioned whether anybody benefited from CQC inspections. ‘Does the CQC help patients and carers?’ he asked – met with an audible ‘no’ from delegates.

Video: Why it's time to get rid of the CQC

Dr Krishna Kasaraneni also spoke in favour, branding CQC processes as a ‘load of nonsense’. ‘No wonder my generation of GPs don’t want to take on a partnership. Let’s get rid of CQC, conference,’ he said.

The motion received overwhelming support, with the vast majority of GPs at the conference voting to ‘decommission the CQC forthwith’. Less than a handful of attendees voted against the motion.

Derby LMC’s Dr John Grenville spoke against the motion. ‘I don’t think we should call for abolition forthwith,’ he appealed to conference. ‘It’s not politically possible. We should concentrate on how it regulates practices and whether it should do, given we’re overregulated. I’d prefer you to vote against.’

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