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British Pregnancy Advisory Service

Question for Department of Health

UIN 118930, tabled on 12 December 2017

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, with reference to the report of the Care Quality Commission into the Merseyside British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS), what steps he is taking to ensure that BPAS clinics operate good health and safety practices; and if he will make a statement.

Answered on

20 December 2017

Since publication of the Care Quality Commission’s (CQC) inspection report into the British Pregnancy Advisory Service (BPAS) Merseyside clinic, BPAS Merseyside, the CQC and Halton Clinical Commissioning Group have developed a local action plan to address the concerns identified. The CQC is monitoring implementation of the action plan through ongoing engagement with BPAS Merseyside.

All independent sector clinics wishing to perform termination of pregnancy, including clinics run by BPAS, must be approved by the Secretary of State for Health and registered with the CQC to undertake that regulated activity. Once registered, the CQC monitors a provider’s compliance with the relevant requirements of the Health and Social Care Act 2008 and regulations made under that Act.

Failure to comply with the requirements of the Abortion Act 1967 (and associated regulations), the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (and associated regulations) and/or the Department’s Required Standard Operating Procedures for independent sector abortion providers may lead to withdrawal of Secretary of State’s approval. The Reviewed Standard Operating Procedures can be viewed at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/313443/final_updated_RSOPs_21_May_2014.pdf

The CQC may also take independent enforcement action under the Health and Social Care Act 2008 which includes the power to suspend or cancel registration and pursue prosecution.