Incident reporting

NCL Wide

As part of the Care Quality Commission (CQC) registration, every GP practice should have an incident policy/procedure in place to investigate all incidents, including non-clinical incidents, near-misses and serious incidents (SIs), which take place at the practice.

Practice staff should use the Learn from Patient Safety Events (LFPSE) system to report all patient safety incidents and near-misses, whether they result in harm or not, as soon as they are identified and prior to the investigation commencing.

To record safety events on LFPSE, in most cases primary care staff and organisations without a local risk management system such as datix will input information directly via an online account (see LFPSE sign-in link, right).

This new online service has been designed for use by staff anywhere healthcare is delivered by organisations registered with an ODS code. This includes general practice, community dentistry and community optometry.

These reports are used by to spot any emerging patterns of similar incidents or anything of particular concern. This will help protect patients by raising awareness of the risks through shared learning with general practices and other health providers across the country.

Reporting incidents to a national central system helps protect patients from avoidable harm by increasing opportunities for the NHS to learn when things go wrong.

The NHS England Patient Safety Domain uses patient safety incident reports submitted to the LFPSE system to identify key themes and trends, and take action at a national level to prevent similar incidents from occurring, often via Patient Safety Alerts.

By reporting a patient safety incident to the LFPSE system, you can gain CPD credits. Event records can be printed or saved in PDF format as the user requires – these can be used for reflection and CDP. To do this, use the “print summary” button on the record summary page, and then select your preferred option to save, print, share.

Reporting events and serious incidents to CQC

It is a requirement of CQC registration that GP practices report all events that indicate, or may indicate, risks to compliance with registration requirements or that may require changes to practice information on the CQC register. For more on the CQC's essential standards of quality and safety, see the CQC website.

The Central Alerting System (CAS) is an online cascading system for issuing patient safety alerts, important public health messages and other safety-critical information and guidance to the NHS and others, including independent providers of health and social care. Providers can register to receive these alerts through the MHRA website.