Private Business Intermediaries

GPs to Face OFSTED like inspections

21/05/2013 | By Sharmila Chauhan
Health secretary Jeremy Hunt is proposing to install a ‘chief inspector of general practice.’

The aim of this new role will be to devise and implement a ratings system for GP practices, similar to those already in place for schools inspector Ofsted.

These reports will “will champion patients’ interests”, say officials. Mr Hunt will unveil the plans at a summit at the think-tank The King’s Fund on Thursday and will say he hopes to install a “rigorous system of inspection” to ensure that GP practices are providing “effective  and responsive care”, a Department of Health spokeswoman said.

He will say: "As a member of the public, I want to know my GP. And I want my GP to be someone that knows me and my family.”

He will also criticise the current out of hours systems for non emergencies saying that there is "no credible alternative" for out-of-hours care so patients end up in A&E.

He will also point out that out-of-hours services are places where patients are seen by a GP "who doesn't know you from Adam"

He is expected to go onto explain his concerns about waiting times for GP appointments:  "We've turned GP practices into places where it's a daily challenge for receptionists to cope with huge call volumes and GPs to get through to all the people they need to see.

"I do not blame NHS staff for this. They are working extremely hard in the face of rising demand. In fact it's they who are telling me how much better things could be organised."


Nursing Times