RCGP-accredited practices will escape CQC scrutiny

Practices accredited by the RCGP will be largely ignored by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), says its chief executive Baroness Barbara Young.

Reports that the CQC, set up this month, will create 'risk profiles' for all GPs are wide of the mark, she told GP.

From 2011, practices will have to meet 16 essential standards of quality and safety.

But the CQC will use QOF and accreditation data to avoid overburdening good practices, Baroness Young said.

'If you have college accreditation, we will say that is enough for us, we will not require any further information.

'Our philosophy has to be not collecting data if it has been collected already. And not inspecting if we do not think there is a problem.'

Work to establish criteria for registering GP practices with the CQC was at a very early stage but would not focus on individual GPs, she said.

'The idea of risk profiling is just completely off the page. We have not even started to design the system, and there is a lot of work before 2011/12.

'We are not going to define a model of care. Our job is to ensure standards are stuck to. If there is any standard-setting, it is going to be by the DoH or the college or, in particular conditions, NICE,' she said.

Data collated by the CQC will be available to the public to establish the quality and range of services a practice provides, said Baroness Young, but not in league tables.

While the CQC will be 'pretty tough' on substandard practices, it would allow time where problems were due to premises, she said. 'We want to problem solve rather than produce a report on how ghastly it has become.'

Meanwhile, the DoH has responded to a consultation on standards for registration with the CQC. It called for penalties for failure to register, including a 12-month prison term or a fine of up to £50,000 for practices.


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