NHS Confederation and NHS Employers has responded to the CQC consultations on new health and social care regulations , which will soon come into force that, they say will help to better pinpoint the standards below which care must not fall.
- Set out new fundamental standards for all care providers.
- Say what services could do to make sure they are open and honest with people when something goes wrong with their care and treatment (known as ‘duty of candour’).
- Make it clear that directors and others in authority are responsible for the overall quality and safety of care (known as the ‘fit and proper person requirement for directors’
In response Rob Webster, chief executive at the NHS Confederation, said:
“We welcome the opportunity to provide views on the CQC’s new guidance on “duty of candour” and the “fit and proper persons” requirements. It is right that breaches of the fundamental standards be treated with utmost seriousness, and that the CQC can respond promptly. It is also important that the CQC respond proportionately and that any prosecutions focus only on the most serious failings in care.”
It is essential that we find ways to ensure public trust is maintained in services in an open and transparent way. This will ultimately be driven at a local level and as part of a wider set of changes, including in the way in which we commission and deliver care. We strongly urge the focus now to be on how to create the right conditions to support and train staff to raise concerns, and to make them feel at ease having open and honest conversations with patients, their families and their carers. A climate of openness and transparency is one of the ways in which board and individual board members will be aware of systematic examples of poor care or neglect in their increasingly complex organisations.
We will be responding to the CQC’s consultation on behalf of our members from across the system to ensure the guidance can most effectively support them.”
Sue Covill, director of employment services at the NHS Employers, said:
“These are two critical consultations for providers and the regulatory system to get right. They have an important role in ensuring standards and new processes will support employers with the work they are leading on an open and transparent NHS.
“The October implementation date for fit and proper persons and the duty of candour requirements is fast approaching. We will be encouraging employers to engage with us and the proposals over the next six weeks to build on what has been prepared and to ensure the practical implementation issues are considered and understood. We need this to work if we are to retain and attract high quality leaders.”