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How have GP practices performed in CQC inspections?

The latest annual report from the CQC sets out ratings for all of the sectors it regulates. We look at how general practice has fared.

Under the CQC's regulation framework GP practices have maintained high standard over the past year. In the year to 31 March 2020, 90% of practices were rated as 'good' and 5% as 'outstanding'.

Just 4% of practices were rated 'requires improvement' and 1% 'inadequate', but the CQC said the headline figures 'masked a more volatile picture' - because 192 GP practices improved their rating to 'good' during the year while 173 dropped from 'good' to 'requires improvement'.

The chart below shows that the figures this year are broadly the same as those for 2019 (which cover the year until 31 July 2019).

General practice outperforms the other sectors the CQC regulates. For example, in acute core services 67% were rated 'good' and 8% 'outstanding', while 23% were rated 'requires improvement' and 2% 'inadequate'.

Regional variations

Practices' performance varies slightly from region to region, although in all parts of the country over 90% of practices are either rated 'good' or 'outstanding'.

However, 10% of practices in the North East and East Midlands were rated as 'outstanding', which compares with just 1% of practices in London achieving the top rating. The capital also had the highest percentage of practices in the 'inadequate' and 'requires improvement' categories, with 9% falling into one of these ratings.

Key lines of enquiry

The annual CQC State of Care report also shows how practices performed in each of the regulator's key lines of enquiry in 2020.

The breakdown shows that 98% of practices are rated either 'good' or 'outstanding' for being caring and under 0.5% are inadequate on this measure.

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