GP star ratings shelvedRCGP suspends talks with the Department of Health

09 June 2006

Plans to award GP surgeries Michelin-style star ratings look to have been scrapped just days after they were first revealed.

Earlier this week it was reported the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) was looking at a scheme to grade family doctors so that patients could assess their quality of care.

If it had gone ahead GP surgeries would have been awarded between one and three stars and encouraged to display the ratings outside their practice.

The new GP ratings would then have been reviewed every three years after a two-day assessment by a panel including a doctor, nurse, surgery manager and patient representative.

Suspending talks

But the RCGP has said it is now suspending talks with the Department of Health over the scheme.

The College said its members were concerned about the implications for GP workloads of the practice accreditation scheme and there were fears it could be 'misused' for a star ratings system.

It said: 'The RCGP wishes to reiterate that its practice accreditation systems are voluntary and developmental and that it has never advocated their use for star ratings.

'The RCGP is now reviewing the project and undertaking further consultation with the profession, patients and other stakeholders.'