Selling a dental practice can be a laborious task, which is why it is crucial to follow the strict guidelines laid out by governing bodies such as CQC when completing the application process. Although the whole transaction is comprised of different, yet equally arduous tasks, the CQC Registration Process is often the reason behind unplanned problems and delays.
Currently, CQC are taking up to 11 weeks to review an application. The first two weeks of this is the validation process, which can be likened somewhat to a game of snakes and ladders. Because any discrepancies or omissions can cause the application to be rejected, first time acceptance is essential for staying on schedule.
Any error including incorrect form use, incomplete location details, missing declaration or inaccurate information – for instance ‘ltd’ instead of ‘limited’ – can result in a set back. The signatures on the form cannot be dated more than two weeks old, therefore if the form is rejected, you must remember to re-date all of the signatures or you may be automatically rejected again.
Once the process is completed by CQC and the fit person interview has been arranged, a letter of intent will be issued to be provided to NHS England; this initiates the partnership application process and generally takes between four and seven weeks depending on whereabouts in the month your 292/293 notices are submitted. By beginning the CQC process at the start of the transaction, it allows the seller to adhere to critical time restraints.
There are of course potential barriers that can occur and these are often a result of small and avoidable mistakes. By following some guidelines, the process can be completed more efficiently, remember:
- CQC introduced changes to the application in both April and June 2015 so ensure you are using the most recent version of the form.
- Read the questions carefully and pay attention to detail. Don’t assume anything!
- Don't underestimate the length of the application process and the labour that it requires.
- Ensure your DBS is in date within the last six months before sending the CQC application form – the DBS checks themselves can take up to eight weeks to be returned.
- Take into consideration the preparation that is required prior to the application as this can take several weeks.
- Filling in the form can take up to eight hours, so ensure you have sufficient time.
Even with these tips, it is important to remember that a helping hand can go a long way. As a leading specialist in practice finance, sales and valuations, Dental Elite is dedicated to providing exactly this support. Working alongside the BDA Benevolent Fund and Bridge2Aid, Dental Elite is not only dedicated to providing expert advice, but it is offering a not-for-profit service for those wishing to use the CQC application support.
If you are looking to sell your practice, and looking for a professional, friendly and client-centric service, Dental Elite is committed to giving a first class service that makes your transaction and CQC application smooth and stress free.
About the author
Luke Moore is one of the Founders and Directors of Dental Elite and has overseen well in excess of 750 practice sales and valuations. With over 11 years working in the dental industry, Luke has extensive knowledge in both dental practice transfers and recruitment and understands the complexities of NHS and Private practices.