A MEDICAL practice serving more than 6,000 patients across Royton, Crompton and Shaw has been labelled “inadequate” after a damming report from health watchdog the Care Quality Commission.
Additionally, the High Crompton branch of the Parks Medical Practice, Royton could close in September.
The Parks, which employs 19 staff across both sites, has been inspected three times by the CQC in the last 10 months, including its most recent visit on April 2, 2019.
Inspectors noted two breaches of regulations covered by the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2014.
The surgery has now been placed in special measures and faces another inspection in six months’ time.
Dr Pal retired on May 31 from the practice, which has 6,044 registered patients including about 1,200 at Trent Road.
CQC inspectors previously visited Royton on June 14, 2018 giving it a ‘requires improvement’ rating.
A further “focused” inspection was undertaken on November 2, 2018 when “some improvements still required action”.
The surgery has now been labelled ‘inadequate’ for well-led and safe care plus ‘requires improvement’ for being effective and responsive.
Only in one it five categories – caring – did the CQC report, published on June 12, call the practice ‘good’.
News of the imminent closure in High Crompton has provoked angry reaction among local politicians.
“This has come as a big shock,” said Crompton ward councillor Diane Williamson.
“We are extremely disappointed to learn that Dr Pals will be closing.
“We have the highest population of elderly residents in the ward of Crompton.
“Those living in High Crompton and are registered at this practice will feel this greatly especially if they use public transport.
“Buses back from Royton – if that is where the practice is going to – are notoriously difficult to get on because you do not definitely know when you are going get out of the surgery.
“We shall be writing to Dr Pal about this decision, as well as other parties, to find out what can be done for the patients who want to transfer to a local Shaw and Crompton based surgery.”
A spokesperson for Parks Medical Practice said: “We have implemented robust systems to ensure the shortfalls which were mentioned in the CQC report do not happen again.
“We also have employed a new member of staff, who has over 15 years of experience of dealing with the CQC. He has written many policies and procedures, as well as helping other surgeries who were in special measures and bringing them up to the Good Rating.
“In June 2018 certain areas where we deemed not up to scratch the inspectors commented we had made a great improvement.
“There are many things the CQC require to see from us on the day of the inspection. We had all these in place but as they were not in as much depth as the CQC wanted that lowered our rating.
“These requirements are easy to correct and our Quality and Management team has already implemented the change so our next inspection should reflect the improved processes.
“One of the clinical inspectors also made the remark to our doctors that they were so impressed with the high standard of patient care they offer.”
Since Dr Pal’s departure, an advanced practioner has been appointed while the two remaining GP partners have done extra sessions. A new long-term locum doctor has been recruited so the two appointments ensure access is the highest it has ever been.
“Finally, we would like to wish Dr Pal all the best for the future. He will be missed dearly.
“We would like to encourage all our patients to join our patient participation group so we can improve from their feedback.
“We are also looking forward to the next CQC inspection as we believe we can show the high level of care we provide and improvements made.
“We would also like to thank all our patients for their continued support.”
• Read the full CQC report at: www.cqc.org.uk/location/1-562761826