The Care Quality Commision (CQC) has today announced that new style inspections of GP practices and out-of-hours services in England will lead to the first ever ratings of practices. Starting in October 2014, CQC intends to inspect approximately 8,000 GP practices across England. GP practices will be rated as Outstanding, Good, Requires Improvement or Inadequate, giving members of the public clear information about how well their local GP practice is performing with the aim of helping people make informed choices about their care.
George McNamara, Head of Policy and Public Affairs at Alzheimer’s Society, said:
‘Given that there are nearly half a million people living with dementia in the community it is vital that GP practices are dementia friendly. GPs are often the first port of call for those worried about their memory. While we see examples of excellent service, there is still far too much variation. Some people worried about their memory are referred within weeks, but we know that sadly people can still wait months for a diagnosis of dementia and accessing vital support.
This new inspection style will encourage open and honest discourse between doctor and patient about the service they want and expect and learning from what works. The use of formal ratings will inspire excellence across the board and give the public a formal way of understanding how well their family doctor is performing.’