CQC to tackle failing care through special measures
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The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has announced a new regime that will tackle failing care through special measures from April 2015. Special measures that were first applied to hospital trusts, are now going to be applied to care homes.
The process was introduced by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) a year ago to 11 failing trusts. The ratings, based on a system first used in schools, give health and care services a rating of outstanding, good, requires improvement or inadequate. Most hospital trusts have since made progress, although only five have been or are being taken out of special measures. Care homes judged as requiring special measures will be given six months to improve or face closure.
CQC chief inspector of adult social care Andrea Sutcliffe said the regulator would shine a spotlight on poor practice and make sure that services improve.
“If they do not, they will have to face the consequences,” said Ms Sutcliffe.
“I am clear that abuse, neglect and poor care will not be tolerated. We welcome the opportunity to work with service providers, commissioners and most importantly people using services, their carers and families to develop a special measures regime which will call time on poor care.
“Our new ratings regime will start in October and will highlight inadequate services. This will be an unambiguous signal that improvements are needed and we will set out clear expectations, including the timescale to sort out problems and where to go for help.
“People’s confidence in adult social care services has been knocked by shocking examples of poor care. I want to restore confidence by celebrating the good work we do see while also tackling persistent poor performance. Together, we can make sure these services are the best they can be for the benefit of everyone who needs them.”
Professor Martin Green, chief executive at Care England, said the CQC’s new special measures regime for failing services should be developed jointly with the care sector.
“It is our hope that this regime will give new clarity and consistency in how failing services will be challenged to improve, and clearly define the process and timescales on when they will be removed from the market,” said Prof. Green.
The National Care Association’s Sheila Scott said she hoped the special measures would be rarely used but when they were invoked, they would focus attention on rapid improvement.
“National Care Association represents small and medium sized businesses so it will be important for us to look closely at the detail of the proposals to make sure that the proposals recognise the challenges that can often face small business,” said Mrs Scott.
“In people’s homes and care homes across the country, we know that dedicated staff are delivering fantastic care for people. Sadly, this is not always the case and we know that some services are continuing to fail the people they serve.”