A MEDICAL service which provides care across the county has been rated ‘outstanding’ by national inspectors.

Cockermouth-based Cumbria Medical Services is run by a team of local GPs with a special interest in minor surgery, dermatology and ophthalmology.

Supported by consultants, they provide a wide range of minor procedures, including hernia operations, vasectomies, carpal tunnel and skin lesion surgery.

These are carried out at GP surgeries, health centres and community hospitals across the county - including Carlisle, Cockermouth, Keswick, Penrith, Workington and Maryport.

Patients are referred to the services by their doctors.

Cumbria Medical Services was inspected by watchdog the Care Quality Commission in May.

It was deemed ‘outstanding’ in three areas and ‘good’ in two, resulting in an overall ‘outstanding’ rating - the highest possible.

Inspectors found that patients were being kept safe and receiving effective treatment that met their needs, with outcomes consistently good.

People were being respected and treated as individuals, giving positive feedback.

Leadership was praised, as was the individual, person-centred care being provided.

Inspectors noted that 98 per cent of patients wpuld recommend the services to family and friends, while waiting times were very low - weeks ahead of recommended target times.

A Cumbria Medical Services spokesman said they were “thrilled” by the rating.

“The commitment of staff to providing excellent quality care to all our patients is obvious to anyone who has contact with our service,” he added.

“We aim to deliver care closer to home and do so by running clinics in several different locations throughout Cumbria. We are keen to ensure that waiting times are kept to a minimum.”