The Care Quality Commission has received clear public support for key changes to the way it regulates and inspects care services.
The changes put it clearly on the side of people who use services, making sure they’re treated with dignity and respect, whenever and wherever they receive care.
The commission engaged with 2,900 people during its three month consultation between June and August 2013. Most people – members of the public, people who use services, carers, CQC staff, organisations that provide care, care professionals, voluntary organisations, and others – agreed with CQC’s proposals for:
· Regulating different services in different ways, based on what has the most impact on improving the quality of people’s care
· The five key questions CQC will ask when it inspects
· Specialist inspectors
· Larger, expert inspection teams
· More use of people with experience of care – experts by experience – in inspection teams
· Intelligent monitoring of NHS acute hospitals, how it will organise ‘indicators’ to direct regulatory activity and the sources for the first set of ‘indicators’
· Rating a service and hospital and inspecting a core of services to award a hospital rating
· The introduction of a statutory ‘duty of candour’ to make sure those who provide care services tell people about any problems that have affected the quality of care
People asked for more clarification on some areas, and there was less than 50% support for some of the proposals – for example the need for both fundamentals of care and expected standards and inspection frequency of 3-5 years for NHS trusts rated outstanding. The Care Quality Commission is considering these areas further, and is committed to working with the public, providers, stakeholders and its staff to do this.
CQC Chief Executive David Behan said: “These changes enable us to do that and to deliver our purpose of making sure health and social care services provide people with safe, effective, compassionate, high-quality care, and to encourage services to improve.
“We are very pleased that our proposals have clear public support. We will take on board all the comments we’ve received, including where people have expressed concerns, as we develop these changes further, continuing to work with people to do so.”
The Care Quality Commission has already started to introduce some of these changes to the way it inspects NHS Hospitals because there was a clear need for urgent improvements in this area. Over the next year it will begin to introduce changes to the way it regulates all other care services.