Dental Compliance: Mythbusting and the CQC’s 5 Key Questions – EFFECTIVE

Did you know that the CQC publish a number of ‘mythbusters’ designed to clarify exactly what they are looking for when they inspect dental practices? They debunk some popular myths, and many of them highlight the importance of compliance with policies, procedures, and training. In this article we look at the ‘Effective key question.

Here at FPM, we take compliance very seriously for all of our clients, and our market-leading compliance software FPM Core exists to make life easier for healthcare professionals when storing and managing policies and procedures.

There are 5 myths that the CQC lists under the ‘Effective’ key question. We won’t look at them all here, but some in particular can be helped by improved compliance, and awareness of policies and procedures. For example:

  • Dental mythbuster 2 - Keeping up to date for the dental practice team: The CQC will review whether the dental team is keeping up to date with training when we look at the effective key question. This relates to Regulation 18 (staffing). This states that persons employed by the service receive support, training, professional development, supervision and appraisal. The PDP is personal to the dentist or DCP and an inspector would not normally need to examine it. However, the CQC expect providers to be able to demonstrate that they have assured themselves team members (including self-employed professionals):
    • are up to date with professional practice and
    • have taken steps to comply with General Dental Council (GDC) requirements.
  • Dental mythbuster 8: Dental care records: One of the fundamental criteria used to manage risk in a dental practice is keeping good quality clinical records. During the inspection we may ask to see parts of a dental care record to corroborate evidence of what staff and patients tell us about the quality of care. If records audits have been systematically undertaken, the audit findings and any subsequent action plans may provide sufficient evidence and the CQC may not need to look at individual dental care records.
  • Dental mythbuster 17: Audit and improvement in primary dental services: Clinical audit reviews current practice and compares this to expected published standards. It:
    • helps identify areas of practice that need improvement
    • identifies and reinforces areas of good practice.

You can read the full list of mythbusters here.

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Created by Jonathan Finch
Jonathan Finch
Jonathan is the Web Content Editor at FPM Group. He writes about issues affecting the UK health and care sectors, and maintains resources and services that make healthcare professionals' lives easier.


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