Combined practice inspection
The combined practice inspection (CPI) process was implemented in all NHS general dental practices in Scotland on 1 January 2014. Prior to this date, practices were subject to three-yearly inspection by their NHS Health Board (HB). Vocational training (VT) practices were also subject to three-yearly inspection by NHS Education for Scotland (NES). In addition, it was anticipated that practices would be required to undergo inspection by Healthcare Improvement Scotland (HIS) as part of its remit for the inspection of NHS and independent healthcare services.
The aims of the CPI were to simplify the inspection requirements faced by Scotland’s NHS general dental practices and to provide an efficient and effective single system that meets the needs of all bodies with a responsibility for inspection.
SDPBRN conducted two studies (feasibility and pilot) to support the development of the CPI process.
Feasibility study (2010/11)
This study was conducted in five General Dental Practices in NHS Lothian with six experienced inspectors. Practices were due for either Health Board (HB) or Vocational Training (VT) inspection. All practices taking part and successfully meeting the existing inspection criteria were not required to undergo HB or VT inspection during the following three years.
The aims of the feasibility study were to field test the CPI tools and processes to determine the initial feasibility of a single CPI process.
Pilot study (2012)
Ten inspectors (5 HB and 5 VT) and 10 NHS General Dental Practices (9 in NHS Lothian and 1 in NHS Fife) participated. All practices were due to undergo a VT and/or a HB practice inspection. All practices taking part and successfully meeting the existing inspection criteria were not required to undergo HB or VT inspection during the following three years.
The aims of the pilot study were to further develop the CPI process and assess its utility as part of an effective and efficient system of inspection and assurance.
Three methods for the conduct of the CPI visit were evaluated:
- Two inspectors jointly inspected all items on the CPI checklist (4 inspections).
- Pre-submitted practice documentation was inspected by the two inspectors in advance of the visit. During the inspection visit both inspectors inspected all other items on the CPI checklist (3 inspections).
- The two inspectors split up during the visit. One inspector inspected the practice documentation and one inspector inspected all other items on the CPI checklist (3 inspections).
Both studies are complete. The CPI process was implemented as the single inspection system for all NHS general dental practices on 1 January 2014. Updates to the CPI checklist are co-ordinated and facilitated by SDPBRN.
Related publications and web resources
- CPI Working Group. (2011) Combined Practice Inspection in General Dental Practice Feasibility Study Report: February 2011 (PDF). SDPBRN Service Report.
- CPI Working Group. (2012) Combined Practice Inspection in General Dental Practice Pilot Study Report: July 2012 (PDF). SDPBRN Service Report.
- CPI Checklist (January 2015)