An innovative medical centre, providing health services to homeless people in the heart of Oxford, has been rated Outstanding by the organisation tasked with monitoring health standards in England and Wales.
The result comes less than a month after the medical centre learned its innovative way of working could be replicated across the country as part of the blueprint of a national dentistry care model following a visit from NHS England.
The practice was rated as Outstanding by CQC in the caring and responsive categories and good in the safe, well-led and effective categories.
Inspectors graded the practice’s ability to work with four out of five patient groups as Outstanding. They were people with long term conditions, families, children and young people, people in vulnerable circumstances, those experiencing poor mental health.
The fifth patient group of older people was not assessed.
The service was rated Outstanding overall.
Inspectors noted: “All patients receive a comprehensive health check when they first register with the practice. Patients health and social care needs were therefore identified at an early stage and services established to meet these needs.”
Stephen Moore, Practice Manager, said: “The team was thrilled to hear the news of the CQC’s grading.
“The team richly deserves this recognition. We’re committed to providing care to all members of the community and the CQC rating is a real tribute to our work with homeless people over the years.”
Stuart Bell, Chief Executive at Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust, said: “I would like to congratulate Luther Street on the Outstanding rating which is borne out of the dedication of all the staff at the practice.
“Each day Luther Street offers outstanding care, with staff working with one another and patients to overcome challenges that can traditionally be a barrier to vulnerable people receiving care.
“The Outstanding rating recognises the excellent care and service provided.”
For 30 years Luther Street Medical Centre has been helping homeless and vulnerably housed people in Oxford.
It was set up to help the city’s homeless population falling through the cracks in the healthcare system and began life in a temporary hut in 1985.
Now it has treatment rooms for physical and mental health assessments, podiatry care, dental services and others.
Last month the Dental Clinic and Medical Practice Team were visited by NHS England’s Deputy Chief Dental Officer Janet Clarke and Senior Programme Lead for Dental, Community Pharmacy and Optical Carol Reece to talk about how the service could be replicated nationwide as they develop an oral health and dental national commissioning guide.
They joined Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust colleagues to pose with their smiley sticks in support of National Smile Month, a national campaign run by the Oral Health Foundation to promote good oral health.