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What makes a practice ‘Outstanding’ in the eyes of the CQC?

Just the idea of an imminent CQC inspection can be enough to send a shiver down the spine of even the most organised, cool and collected of Practice Managers, inspiring nightmarish visions of policies lost down the back of a waiting room chair or being penalised for having a carpeted consulting room (don’t worry - that second one’s just a myth).

But what about the other side of the coin? Although it can be understandably tough to see past the worries and concerns surrounding an upcoming inspection, they can also be viewed as an opportunity to show the world just how good a job you and your staff are doing.  An Outstanding rating is awarded where inspectors feel that an exceptional service is being provided, and many practices up and down the country are doing just that, each gaining the recognition their efforts richly deserve.

Here at First Practice Management we’ve put together a handy document for our members in the CQC area of our Policies and Procedures Library to showcase examples provided by CQC inspectors of what they view as outstanding practice, each corresponding to one of the five key questions and six key patient population groups.  While this doesn’t in itself offer any guarantee of a practice being awarded an Outstanding rating, it does give a clearer idea of the sort of services that show practices are working above and beyond – an even more commendable achievement given the challenging circumstances many working in primary care currently find themselves in. Browsing the examples we’ve selected provides potential opportunities to continually improve and learn from other practices that have already achieved an Outstanding standard.

For non-members, the infographic below provides a much simpler look at the sort of ideas that might improve your chances of being judged outstanding, from tackling social isolation in your area by supporting local gardening clubs, to actively promoting learning from experience in order to create a safer working environment.

So the next time the prospect of an inspection comes up, even though it’s much easier said than done, try not to get bogged down by dread. Instead, turn your mind to the areas where your practice shines and seizing the chance to shine a light on all the hard work that has gone into achieving it.

 

 


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