Viewpoint: When the GMC and CQC waste our time, maybe we should CQD?

I'm officially old. I must be, because one of the patients told me she thought the young doctors were particularly good but then didn't include me in their number.

I'm also old enough to remember building radios from Tandy, and days when scanners could pick up police and aircraft transmissions. Although I was never an actual radio 'ham' - more of a CB enthusiast (remember that?) - I am aware that CQ is a combination of letters used to put a general call out to other radio users. It's often repeated as cq cq cq, which in turn reminds me of CQC.

Recently we notified the CQC of a change in the contact email address for our practice - the addition of the letters CCG before .nhs.uk.
Simple idea? Not really. We've had to re-submit all the various components of our CQC registration, a process taking up time from other work in a busy practice day.

So the agency, which is dedicated to ensuring we are safe and effective when it comes to looking after patients, thus manages to burn a coupe of hours of valuable practice time over a simple change of email address.

And whilst we're mulling over time going south, let's talk about this week's latest from the GMC. They are going off to find out how people feel about punishing doctors who were slow to spot that they were rubbish, whose partners were slow to spot they were rubbish, who have bullied or discriminated against anyone in work or at home, and forcing those people who have not apologised to crack on and use the 'S' word.

It's this last one that rankles with me. Have you ever handled a complaint that didn't involve an apology? There's always one, often fulsome and heartfelt when we really have made a mistake, and occasionally one of those 'I'm sorry you think it's unreasonable to not give antibiotics for the common cold, but my hands are tied by science' type.

So this week the GMC and CQC made me think of another call sign used way back in the day: CQD. Go on, check it up on Wikipedia.

  • Dr Chris Mimnagh is a GP and co-director of clincial strategy at Liverpool Health Partners.

Photo: UNP

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