A medical centre in Shadwell has been given the lowest possible rating by health and social care watchdog the Care Quality Commission (CQC). 

City Square Medical Group on Deancross Street has been rated 'inadequate' after three visits by CQC inspectors in May, June and July 2023 raised concerns.

The centre provides primary medical care to approximately 11,800 patients in the Stepney area and registered with CQC in May 2023 after two smaller practices merged.

In a report published on February 1, inspectors revealed the practice had breached regulations concerning recruitment procedures that lacked efficient screening. 

Some staff were found to lack Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) documentation at the correct level during inspections. 

East London Advertiser: Inspections flagged several concerns to CQCInspections flagged several concerns to CQC (Image: Google Maps)

Safeguarding training was, in some cases, below standard. When inspections started, the safeguarding lead was trained to Level 3 in child safeguarding, but only to Level 2 in adults. 

Following the inspections, the CQC received evidence from the practice that new staff had since had an Enhanced DBS check and that the practice's recruitment plan had been updated to include a new DBS policy. 

Safeguarding training was also raised to the appropriate level. 

The CQC inspections also flagged that non-medical assistant practitioner (AP) staff were undertaking medical reviews that were beyond their remit. 

The CQC stated this "put patients at the risk of harm", especially those with diabetes whose medicines had also been reviewed by AP staff. 

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In some cases, diabetes patients had their medicines changed by staff who lacked the appropriate training or guidance of a qualified clinician. 

Life-saving emergency apparatus was not kept closely together. In their third visit, inspectors asked senior staff to display how they would access the emergency equipment in the event they would need to use it to treat a child. 

While the member of staff showed they were able to access the defibrillator, they were then unable to locate a paediatric defibrillator pad as it was not stored with the main equipment. 

It was found in an unlabelled drawer at the bottom of the emergency equipment trolley more than five minutes later with additional support from other staff. 

A spokesperson for NHS North East London said on behalf of City Square Medical Group: “Since the CQC inspection took place, we have been working closely with the team at City Square Medical Group to address the concerns raised and ensure the required improvements are in place.

“Our priority is ensuring all patients at the practice can access safe and high quality services that meet the high standards they rightly expect."

The practice has been placed under special measures by Chief Inspector of Health Care, Dr Sean O'Kelly. 

This means City Square Medical Group will undergo another inspection in the next six months to monitor if sufficient changes have been made to practices within the group. 

If not, measures will be taken to prevent them from operating their service.