The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman along with regulators, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) is joining more than 100 people, organisations and national bodies with an interest in adult social care to officially mark the launch of the Quality matters commitment.
Quality matters sets out a determined and shared vision on how quality care and support can be achieved and person-centred care becomes the norm for all.
This piece of work has been jointly developed to ensure that staff, providers, commissioners and funders, regulators and other national bodies all play their part in listening to and acting upon the voice of people using services, their families and carers.
Andrea Sutcliffe, CQC’s Chief Inspector of Adult Social Care, said:
“I am delighted to support the launch of the Quality matters commitment. This is an important moment for adult social care – such a broad coalition of people and organisations coming together to focus on quality will I hope make a sustainable difference for people using services, their families and carers.
“We know that the sustainability of good quality care is precarious so it has never been more important to bring everyone who cares about social care together to make sure quality remains central to all our work.
“Quality Matters has been developed in collaboration and our ambitions can only succeed if we continue to work together to embed the principles we have agreed and deliver the practical actions people said they wanted to see.
“I am grateful to everyone who has been involved in the development of Quality Matters but the real work starts now. We have to make our ambitions a reality so that people using services, their families and carers can be confident that quality really does matter.”
Clenton Farquharson, Chair of Think Local Act Personal, said:
“There are so many great people who work in adult social care and quality is about what people who use services, their families and carers, tell each other it is. Through Quality matters, I want to feel confident that my mum will get great care even when I’m not there.”
Jackie Doyle-Price MP, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Care and Mental Health said:
“Every day social care positively transforms lives in our country – supporting some of the most vulnerable people in our communities. We can be proud of the progress we are making on maintaining and improving quality but there is always more to do to address variation.
“That is why I welcome the launch of Quality matters and endorse the priority areas for action to make a real difference for people who use services, carers, families and everyone working in the sector.”
Michael King, Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman, said:
“We have been actively involved throughout the life of Quality matters and welcome its publication.
“People should have a voice in designing the services they receive, whether they had a good or bad experience, because their feedback can be invaluable. That’s why the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has worked with Healthwatch England to clarify the complaints process so organisations are clear and people know how to make a complaint.
“We are encouraging organisations to focus on the culture of how complaints are viewed and dealt with. This includes how their staff handle individual complaints, and how board members can have more oversight of complaints received about the services they are responsible for. We want to see care providers create a culture of quality across their whole organisation, regardless of people’s roles or responsibilities.
“As the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman, we share learning from the complaints we investigate to help drive service improvements. That’s why we wholeheartedly support Quality matters and hope it will help ensure people, and their carers, receive the quality of services they deserve.“
Margaret Willcox, President of the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS), said:
“ADASS believes that everyone deserves to experience high-quality, personal, dignified adult social care if they need it. We recognise that there is a lot of great care provided by dedicated leaders and staff to people in their own homes and in care homes. This was recognised in the CQC’s ‘state of adult social care services report’ published last week.
“Whilst we recognise the pressure on the sector, not least the financial and workforce pressures, and continue to bring our influence to bear on these matters, we believe that more can and must be done to improve quality.
“We are delighted that so many organisations have come together to develop the Quality matters initiative, showing a real commitment to improving the quality of services, and in turn the lives of those that use them.”
Cllr Izzi Seccombe, Chairman of the Local Government Association’s (LGA) Community Wellbeing Board, said:
“Quality is everybody’s business and the LGA is strongly committed to support councils to deliver high quality, safe and person-centred care and support to help our citizens.
“Despite the severe funding challenges facing adult social care, the majority of care is of a standard that we would expect for ourselves and our loved ones. We have worked closely with our national partners to develop our shared commitment to supporting local commissioners and providers deliver care which enriches and enhances lives and supports the workforce.
“If we are to achieve the standard of care and support we all aspire to and people deserve, we urgently need a long-term settlement for care, both in terms of around the type of system we want to provide and funding.”