The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has introduced new guidance on assessing the financial viability of care providers applying for registration. From 12 February 2018 the CQC are introducing a more consistent and proportionate way of assessing the financial viability of providers applying for registration – although this only applies to some providers.
This follows extensive engagement with our stakeholders, including providers, and they will seek assurance in the form of a statement letter from a financial specialist. This could be an accountancy, bank or financial services firm.
This is new registration guidance; the assessment of the applicants’ financial viability (under Regulation 13 of the CQC (Registration) Regulations 2009) takes place at the point of registration application. CQC have introduced this new streamlined method of assessing compliance with Regulation 13 because providers applying for registration said that they were not always clear about what they need to provide to demonstrate their compliance with Regulation 13, and that this had led to delays in registration applications.
The new approach will apply to new providers submitting a new registration application. Existing providers applying to remove or vary a condition, add a location or add a regulated activity are not generally required to submit a statement. However, it may also apply to some existing providers seeking to make changes to their registration (for instance for increases in scale or when we have intelligence that suggests a provider does not have the financial standing to provide the services set out in their Statement of Purpose).
NHS Trusts and local authorities are exempt from the requirement (as set out in Regulation 13 of CQC Registration Regulations 2009). Adult social care providers currently in the Market Oversight Scheme will not be required to provide a letter; this is because our Market Oversight colleagues monitor the financial sustainability of these providers.
Evidence on an NHS contract providers sufficient assurance and we will not require the following providers to submit a statement letter:
- NHS GP practices
- NHS dentists
- NHS 111, out of hours and urgent care services
- Non-NHS organisations with NHS contracts
The guidance for providers is available on the registration pages of the CQC website, and the CQC produced a template of the statement letter also available from the website, which recommends that applicants use this template as it clearly explains to the financial specialist what is being requested and why, under the regulations.