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13-02-2012 | Article

RCGP quality scheme gains support


RCGP and CQC joint statement

Over 150 practices have signed up for the RCGP Practice Accreditation award programme since its launch last year, the College has revealed.

The programme has been developed in collaboration with the Care Quality Commission (CQC) and is being encouraged as a way for practices to ensure that they attain the standards required for CQC registration.

The RCGP says that the scheme is "much more than a mark of quality assurance and compliance", which helps practices to enhance their organisational systems and procedures, such as risk assessment and processes for notifying patients of staff changes.

The Department of Health previously agreed to postpone the deadline for registration of primary medical services with the CQC until April 2013. The CQC says that this will allow time for practices to engage in such quality and accreditation schemes as evidence of compliance with its essential standards.

The BMA is meanwhile continuing to lobby for changes to the CQC registration process to ensure it is "proportionate and appropriate, with bureaucracy at a minimum".

Professor Nigel Sparrow, RCGP lead for Practice Accreditation, said: "Practices that enrol in the Practice Accreditation programme are making a commitment to continuous development of patient-centred care. The programme has been designed to provide immediate improvements for patients.

"It will be a benchmark of quality, assuring patients that their practice is committed to the highest standards of care."

GP News is an independent clinical news service provided by Springer Healthcare Limited. © Springer Healthcare Ltd; 2012

By Caroline Price