Framework to reduce duplication in inspection of general practice is published

Framework to reduce duplication in inspection of general practice is published

January 16 2018 A framework which should help reduce the burden on general practice regarding...

CQC will get powers to extend coverage to include online medical services

CQC will get powers to extend coverage to include online medical services

January 4 2018 The Care Quality Commission is to start inspecting independent online healthcare...

GP numbers steady as patient lists grow, Scottish data shows

GP numbers steady as patient lists grow, Scottish data shows

December 18 2017 The number of GPs in Scotland’s has remained relatively unchanged in a...

Scottish Government pledges 800 more GPs over the next ten years

Scottish Government pledges 800 more GPs over the next ten years

December 5 2017 The Scottish Government has announced it will aim to increase the number of GPs...

‘Highest ever number of people entering GP training in NHS history’ recorded

‘Highest ever number of people entering GP training in NHS history’ recorded

November 30 2017 The number of people entering GP training increased by 138 to 3,157, new data...

  • Framework to reduce duplication in inspection of general practice is published

    Framework to reduce duplication in inspection of general practice is published

    Tuesday, 16 January 2018 13:28
  • CQC will get powers to extend coverage to include online medical services

    CQC will get powers to extend coverage to include online medical services

    Thursday, 04 January 2018 11:59
  • GP numbers steady as patient lists grow, Scottish data shows

    GP numbers steady as patient lists grow, Scottish data shows

    Monday, 18 December 2017 17:27
  • Scottish Government pledges 800 more GPs over the next ten years

    Scottish Government pledges 800 more GPs over the next ten years

    Tuesday, 05 December 2017 11:08
  • ‘Highest ever number of people entering GP training in NHS history’ recorded

    ‘Highest ever number of people entering GP training in NHS history’ recorded

    Thursday, 30 November 2017 09:30

a medical professional at computer cbJanuary 4 2018

The Care Quality Commission is to start inspecting independent online healthcare services. 

Confirmation of the intention to extend the powers by the Department of Health means that “for the first time, all healthcare organisations in England that offer regulated care will be rated by the CQC.” It means the CQC will inspect an additional 800 or so providers alongside existing hospital and GP services.

“Examples of ‘independent doctors’ services include providers that offer healthcare (such as medical advice and prescriptions from a GP) online or digitally,” said the CQC. “Other examples of ‘independent doctors’ services include vaccination clinics, family planning clinics, slimming clinics and private GP surgeries (including walk-in centres) that do not have NHS contracts.”

In September 2017, the Department confirmed that it would broaden the CQC’s powers to include independent healthcare providers of cosmetic surgery, substance misuse and termination of pregnancy clinics. This latest announcement is the outcome of a further consultation and means that the award of a rating for a regulated service is set to become the default way that the regulator presents the judgements from its inspections.

More than 30 providers in England are currently registered with the CQC and offer primary care online or digitally. “CQC has inspected all of these providers and will publish a national report on what it has found about the quality and safety of online and digital healthcare in the New Year,” said the CQC.

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt commented: “We are planning ahead to guarantee safer and better care for patients in the years to come. These changes are a world first for patient safety, modernising our tough Ofsted-style inspection scheme so we keep pace with the changing landscape of healthcare, as well as helping tech-savvy patients to make informed decisions about their care.”

The CQC will now develop an approach for how it will rate these additional services and launch a public consultation on this topic shortly.

NHS Digital has welcomed the announcement, with the CQC being able to cover ‘digital doctors’ to protect patients in the growing healthcare app industry. Hazel Jones, Programme Director for Apps and Wearables at NHS Digital, said: “This rating scheme will complement the NHS apps library, which aims to provide trusted digital tools for patients and the public to manage and improve their health.

“The library, which is still in test phase, currently includes a small number of GP apps which have all been assessed by the CQC. The requirement for CQC assessment is part of the set of digital assessment questions developers work through before an app is published on the library, which are jointly owned by the specialist organisations responsible for them.”

Links:
Department of Health announcement     
CQC announcement        
NHS Digital response       

Management News

January 22 2018 An updated respiratory health plan for Wales has been published, taking forward the national strategy for the next three years.