A private hospital rated inadequate and placed in special measures has been ordered to pay £5,070 at Bromley Magistrates’ Court after failing to display its Care Quality Commission (CQC) performance rating and report.
The Pemberdeen Laser Cosmetic Surgery Clinic Limited, which runs The Belvedere Private Hospital in Knee Hill, London was fined £500 in court yesterday. It was also ordered to pay £4,520 costs and a £50 surcharge.
At its most recent inspection in March the clinic was again rated inadequate and placed into special measures with the threat of its operations being restricted if it did not improve within six months.
The CQC brought the case as a link to the latest inspection report was not displayed conspicuously on the clinic’s website and took an inspector more than 15 minutes to locate, which it said would make it difficult for a member of the public to find.
The CQC also discovered the hospital’s website carried a differing more positive rating from an organisation known as ‘CQC Investigations’, which is not affiliated to or recognised by the regulator.
At the time, a statement on the Belvedere Private Hospital home page said: “Click here to see our latest CQC report by CQC Investigations.”
This link led to a report entitled ‘Mock CQC report’ conducted in August 2020 which rated the hospital as good, despite an official CQC inspection published the same month rating it as inadequate.
The official CQC report with the inadequate rating has now been added to the webpage, but the mock report is also still present.
‘Egregious breach of regulations’
Dr Nigel Acheson, deputy chief inspector of hospitals at the CQC, said: “This was an egregious breach of our regulations by The Pemberdeen Laser Cosmetic Surgery Clinic Limited and I welcome the decision of the court as this was completely unacceptable.
“We expect all providers to demonstrate transparency, openness and honesty in the quality of care provided.
“When providers are not open and transparent, this could signal a risk to patient safety. It also does not allow patients to be empowered to make an informed choice for whatever treatment they wish to choose.
“I hope this prosecution reminds providers that we will not tolerate any breach of the regulations and will take action to protect patients.”
Health & Protection contacted the Belvedere Private Hospital for comment but has not received a response.