A GP practice has been placed in special measures after inspectors found it was failing its patients.

Northbourne Surgery has been rated ‘inadequate’ after a visit by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) in March this year identified serious failings in its care for the elderly, people with long-term conditions, young people and families and people with mental health problems including dementia.

The report said “safety of care for older patients was not a priority” at the practice - based in Wimborne Road, Bournemouth - which was also not recording health ‘outcomes’ for elderly patients unable to attend health checks.

Inspectors found “no systems to identify and follow up patients” living in “disadvantaged circumstances” who were at risk of harm.

Staff were not “aware of their responsibilities” in passing on concerns about vulnerable children and adults who might be suffering abuse.

Also, the report said the practice was “unable to identify patients experiencing poor mental health or those with dementia”.

Under ‘special measures’ the CQC will conduct a follow up inspection in six months. If no improvement is made the commission can cancel the surgery’s registration.

Ruth Rankine, chief inspector of general practice, said: “During our inspection we saw that staff were caring and treated patients with compassion, dignity and respect. However, we also found that care and treatment was not always delivered in line with best practice.

“We have found significant areas of concern, which is why we are placing the practice into special measures - so opening the way for the practice to receive support from NHS England among others.”

Surveys showed the practice was in line with national averages for patient satisfaction.

However working age patients expressed dissatisfaction about inflexibility in its appointment system.

Other issues identified by the CQC were a lack of “timely” action to identify abnormal results after investigations, a shortfall in infection control procedures and a failure to show staff were approved to give vaccines.

NORTHBOURNE Surgery declined to comment about the report when visited by the Daily Echo.

However, it has published a statement for patients on its website in which it claimed the failings had not lead to “reported incidents of harm”.

The statement said: “We would like to apologise to patients for any anxiety that the results of the inspection could cause and would like to reassure them that that the issues identified by the CQC have not led to any reported incidents of harm.

“We have already been working with local commissioners and national NHS organisations along with local providers to ensure that those issues that were identified by the CQC which led to the overall rating will be improved on and look forward to demonstrating these improvements to the CQC during their return visit later this year.”