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CQC temporarily closes GP surgery after deeming practice ‘unfit for purpose’

by Valeria Fiore
16 October 2018

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A GP practice has been asked to temporarily suspend its services to patients following a CQC inspection earlier this month.

NHS Knowsley CCG announced on 9 October that the Aston Healthcare GP practice site at Gresford Medical Centre closed with ‘immediate effect’ following a CQC inspection on 3 October.

According to the CCG, the CQC sent a letter to Aston Healthcare requiring them to temporarily close the Gresford Medical Centre site, which closed on 8 October.

A spokesperson for NHS Knowsley CCG said: ‘The CQC has determined that the practice building is currently unfit for purpose and therefore patient safety is at the centre of the decision to close.

‘We will be working very closely with Aston Healthcare to ensure changes are made quickly to minimise any inconvenience caused to patients.’

Patients will still be able to access GP care from one of the other five Aston Healthcare GP practice sites while Gresford Medical Centre is closed.

A spokesperson for Aston Healthcare said: ‘We take our responsibility to ensure that patients receive general practice services in a safe environment extremely seriously.

‘The recent CQC inspection has highlighted a number of concerns with regard to the refurbishment of our Gresford Medical Centre site that require immediate attention and therefore we will be closing the site on a temporary basis to ensure all remedial works are undertaken.’

According to a CQC spokesperson, it’s rare for the CQC to suspend or cancel a provider’s registration as very few GP practices are rated inadequate.

In its annual State of Care report published last week, the CQC said that across all inspection areas, 91% of GP surgeries were rated as good and 5% as outstanding, with 1% rated as inadequate and 4% as requires improvement.

A CQC spokesperson said: ‘CQC inspectors visited Gresford Medical Centre (Aston Healthcare) on 3 October to conduct a comprehensive inspection. Inspectors identified serious concerns with the safety of the premises and significant failings in the care being provided.

‘Inspectors are currently working very closely with their partner agencies and enforcement action is being considered. The inspection report will be issued in due course and any action the CQC takes is subject to appeal by the registered provider.’