Dental Compliance: Mythbusting and the CQC’s 5 Key Questions - SAFE

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 ‘safety’ key question.

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

There are 10 myths that the CQC lists under the safety 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 28: Safeguarding adults at risk. When the CQC inspect, they need to see that all practice staff can demonstrate their competence in safeguarding adults at risk. They need to:
    • demonstrate their understanding of the definition of an adult at risk and the types of abuse they may be subject to
    • show awareness of the internal arrangements for recording a safeguarding adult concern and how this is included within the practice’s safeguarding adults policy
    • show awareness of the external process for reporting the concern and how this is in line with local multi-agency policies and procedures.
  • Dental Mythbuster 35: Medicines management in dental practices. Staff must follow provider policies and procedures to ensure the safe management of medicines including controlled drugs (see Mythbuster 28 for further details). Dental practices should routinely review the effectiveness and appropriateness of the care provided to ensure effective, safe care. This includes the appropriate and safe prescribing of medicines. Read Dental Mythbuster 17: Audits in primary care dental services.
  • Dental mythbuster 36: Security of blank prescription forms. Practices need to have systems in place to ensure prescriptions are produced, signed and stamped in accordance with the current regulations. These are:
    • Schedule 6 of the NHS (Pharmaceutical and Local Pharmaceutical Services) Regulations 2013 and
    • the associated paragraph 39(3) of Schedule 6 to the GMS Regulations.
  • Dental mythbuster 38: Infection prevention and control. All registered providers of health and social care must meet the Code of Practice on the prevention and control of infections. Good management and organisational processes are crucial to make sure that high standards of infection prevention (including cleanliness) are developed and maintained. You should have an effective infection prevention and control (IPC) policy. This should be:
    • relevant to your practice
    • accessible to all staff
    • updated regularly.

There should also be an IPC audit programme, so policies and procedures are effective and up to date. The audit should show evidence of issues identified and how they have been addressed.

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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