The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is consulting on a further set of proposals which will help shape the next phase of health and social care regulation across the country. It has also published its response to the first consultation held earlier this year.
For the next eight weeks, anyone with an interest is encouraged to have their say.
- Changes to the regulation of primary medical services and adult social care services, including the frequency and intensity of its inspections and how CQC monitors providers and gathers its intelligence.
- Improvements to the structure of registration and CQC’s definition of ‘registered providers’.
- How CQC will monitor, inspect and rate new models of care and large or complex providers.
- Updated approach to the ‘fit and proper persons’ requirement.
Commenting on the proposals, David Behan, Chief Executive of CQC, said, 'Everyone has the right to experience safe, high-quality and compassionate care. We are seeking views on how CQC’s regulation will play its part in achieving this.
'As providers respond to the rapidly changing health and care landscape by exploring new models of care, we are consulting on how we will regulate these to ensure that we encourage improvement, collaboration and innovation while ensuring that people get good, safe care.
'This is the second in a series of three consultations aimed at simplifying and strengthening the way we regulate. Today, we are proposing changes to how we regulate adult social care and primary medical services; changes which will help us to use information more effectively so we can target our inspections in services where there is greatest risk to the quality and safety of care. We will continue to report on quality in an open and transparent way to help services to improve and also to help people make decisions about their care.
'I hope as many people as possible will take the time to read our proposals and tell us what they think.'
Some of the proposals CQC is now seeking feedback on include:
- Aligning the way CQC monitors, inspects and rates primary medical services and adult social care services, featuring a new way of collecting data to ensure a better view of quality, allowing longer intervals between inspections for services rated as Good and Outstanding, and the abolition of the current limit that prevents CQC from amending ratings following inspection if the last rating was awarded less than six months previously.
- CQC increasing its focus on how to encourage adult social care services that are repeatedly rated as Requires Improvement to get to the expected standard of quality.
- Outlining the principles for registering providers at the level of greatest accountability (as CQC currently does and will continue to do for NHS trusts), changes to how registration will record services that providers are registered to deliver and provider-level assessment for all health and care sectors to help encourage improvement.
- Changes to how providers should engage in the ‘fit and proper persons’ requirement for directors and the information CQC will be expecting from them.
- CQC to award population group ratings for primary medical services for the key questions around ‘responsive’ and ‘effective’ only. This is because the ratings for ‘safe’, ‘well-led’ and ‘caring’ have tended to be consistent across the population groups.
- Assessment frameworks for health and social care.
- Updated guidance on how CQC regulates NHS trusts – CQC will begin its inspections using this from the end of June.
- Updated guidance for Registering the Right Support for learning disability services.
The closing date for all comments is Tuesday 8th August. CQC expects to formally respond to the feedback from the consultation later in the year.
CQC will hold a third consultation, focusing on how it will regulate and rate independent healthcare services, as well as a further joint consultation with NHS Improvement on how the ratings for its ‘use of resources’ assessments could be combined with CQC’s ratings of NHS trusts in the Autumn.