Inspectors have slammed a Wigan GP practice for leaving hazardous material in a treatment room.
Bradshaw Medical Centre has been told it needs to improve by the health regulator, the Care Quality Commission (CQC), following an inspection in October.
Incidents that were recorded, or informally discussed, were only discussed with the members of staff who were involved and lessons were not shared throughout to make sure that action was taken to improve safety in the practice
The Orrell practice was criticised for not identifying a risk in relation to liquid nitrogen, a dangerous substance, being accessible in one of the treatment rooms where adults and children were consulted and treated.
As a result, the practice was rated as requiring improvement for how safe it is but also for how well-led the service was. In the three other areas inspected, how effective, caring and responsive to people’s needs the service is, were rated as good.
A report published this week following the inspection reads: “Health and safety risks were not appropriately managed. The practice had failed to identify a risk in relation to liquid nitrogen (which was dangerous and hazardous) and was accessible in one of the treatment rooms where adults and children were consulted and treated.
“The system in place for reporting and recording significant events was newly introduced. It was not possible to evidence that it was effective. Administration staff did not recognise their responsibility to report incidents.
“Incidents that were recorded, or informally discussed, were only discussed with the members of staff who were involved and lessons were not shared throughout to make sure that action was taken to improve safety in the practice. There were two recent incidents relating to the fridge for example, which had not been communicated to all staff.
“When things went wrong patients received reasonable support, truthful information, and a written apology. They were told about any actions to improve processes to prevent the same thing happening again. However, there was no formal system to report and review comments from patients.
“There was a system and process in place to keep patients safe and safeguarded from abuse.”
The overarching governance framework, which supported delivery of the strategy and good quality care, was found to be ineffective.
The report reads: “Arrangements to monitor and identify risk were not failsafe. There was a business continuity plan but not all staff were aware of it or knew what it was for.
“There was a leadership structure and staff felt supported by management. The practice had a number of policies and procedures to govern activity but meetings where all staff attended were only quarterly and safety issues were not discussed with all members of staff.”
The centre was also praised for how it treats patients, with a survey showing patients rated the practice higher than others for most aspects of care.
Patients said they were treated with compassion, dignity and respect and they were involved in decisions about their care and treatment.
NHS Wigan Borough Clinical Commissioning Group (CCQ) which commissions the practice, said the report showed it cares about its patients.
Dr Tim Dalton, Local GP and Chair of the CCG, said: “The CQC report for Bradshaw Medical Practice shows that it provides good quality care to its patients.
“It works hard to identify those patients that need extra support and responds well to meet their needs. The CQC report also shows that there are processes that the practice needs to improve.
“This practice cares about their patients and works well with the CCG, so I am confident that they will implement the advice given by the CQC. We at the CCG will offer them any support they need to help them achieve this.”