Last week we launched one of the tools that support our inspectors to deliver our new approach – intelligent monitoring. For some of you I know the release of this information has been challenging, and it has prompted many enquiries to your practices asking what does it mean and how do we use it.
I myself have had a busy week answering just those same questions, and you may have seen some of the many media articles and television reports focusing on our new tool.
The most important point I continued to reiterate throughout the week was that intelligent monitoring is not a rating.
Intelligent monitoring is set of data and indicators that our inspectors use to help them prioritise when and what they will inspect when they visit a practice. It will be continuously reviewed and updated every three months. A colleague recently explained it in a way that really hit home for me – it’s a start of a conversation between an inspector and a practice to help the inspector understand where and what they should be looking at, but it’s not the final conclusion on the quality of care provided.
However, it is extremely important that we share this information publicly and widely. Right from the beginning of the developments of our new approach the public, providers and our stakeholders rammed home the point that we must be a transparent regulator. We expect this of our providers and we must deliver nothing less ourselves. It is so important that we share all the information we hold and use to inform our work with the public, who are rightly at the very heart of everything we do here at CQC.
You can find out more about intelligent monitoring online.
And for those of you who missed it last week, here are the highlights on the first two practices we recently rated as outstanding:
Irlam Medical Practice 2 is a small practice run by three GPs, which looks after just under 4000 people in the Irlam area. We saw many examples of outstanding care being given at the practice including good leadership, great links with the local community and clinical audits that were carried out on a regular basis.
Salford Health Matters Eccles is social enterprise which is a very different type of practice to Irlam 2, but it also displayed many examples of outstanding care. This included, good access to appointments for patients, vulnerable people that were looked after excellently and a great mix of skills amongst the staff.
Our National Senior GP Advisor Nigel Sparrow is back from a well-earned break, so you’ll be pleased to hear our weekly myth busters have returned as well! This week Nigel focuses on the Friends and Family Test. You can find that mythbuster here.
Have a great week ahead everyone,
Steve is the CQC Chief Inspector of General Practice.
He continues to practise as a GP at Bellevue Medical Centre in Birmingham, a large academic training practice involved in research and health care education at undergraduate and postgraduate levels.