Shropshire Star

MP assured 'immediate action' being taken after GP surgery placed into special measures

A Shropshire MP says has been assured immediate action has been taken after a medical practice was placed into special measures.

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Highley Medical Centre. Photo: Google

Highley Medical Centre near Bridgnorth was inspected by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) last November, and found to be "inadequate" with concerns about the quality of care and treatment being provided.

As a result of this inspection, Highley Medical Centre was rated as inadequate overall. It was rated good for being caring, however it was found to require improvement for being effective and responsive, and was deemed inadequate for being safe and well-led. The service was previously rated as good overall.

Following the review, Ludlow MP Philip Dunne, whose constituency also covers Bridgnorth, said he would offer any support he could.

"I am aware that following inspection by the CQC, Highley Medical Centre has been placed into special measures, reflecting the regulator’s concerns about care and treatment, as well as governance," he said.

"These are very serious concerns, but I have been assured that being placed in special measures has meant immediate action has already been taken to make rapid improvements to the service.

"This includes Shropshire CCG working closely with the practice to construct a comprehensive plan to address the challenges the practice faces.

"I have already discussed this issue with the CCG, and stand ready to offer any support I can, to ensure local patients in and around Highley get the standard of medical care they should expect.”

Philip Dunne has offered to help after Highley Medical Practice was placed into special measures

Janet Ortega, CQC’s head of integrated care and GP inspection, called the November findings 'concerning'.

“When CQC visited Highley Medical Centre, we found a service that wasn’t providing the level of care that people using its services should be able to expect," she said.

“Despite staff demonstrating a kind and caring approach to their patients, leaders could not demonstrate that they had the capacity and skills to address the challenges within the practice."

Inspectors found that the practice had not always acted effectively on potential safeguarding information; patients prescribed high risk medicines had not always received the required blood test monitoring in line with guidance; several patients were overdue a medicine review; systems and processes to assess, monitor and mitigate the risks relating to the safety of patients who may be at risk were not effective.

Also, patients with long-term conditions were not always offered a structured annual review to check their health and medical needs were being met; there was no system in place to monitor compliance with staff training therefore the practice was unable to demonstrate that all staff had the skills, knowledge and experience to carry out their roles effectively.