The rocky road to the right sort of regulation
By Caring Times editor Geoff Hodgson
Oh dear! The Care Quality Commission has had to apologise to hundreds of GPs for giving incorrect patient safety risk assessments. The British Medical association is fuming and has called for banding system to be scrapped.
This doesn’t augur auspiciously for the new ratings systems for care homes. Could it be that, despite the most earnest of intent, the CQC is still off-piste in terms of its core function as a regulator?
I wonder how alone I am in looking back to the “bad old days” of local authority-based inspection units with a certain fond nostalgia? – not for the local authority link-up; that had to go, but more of a feeling that inspectors had a less fuzzy idea of their role than they do now.
When the inspection units coalesced into a single national body in 2003, greater consistency was a widely hoped-for major benefit. That hasn’t happened, and never will unless we can clear the ethical hurdles surrounding the cloning of inspectors. In the absence of greater consistency I struggle to see any other benefits the various national regulators have bought to wider society and the care sector specifically. without yet again rubbing their noses in their failures – we all know what they are – but what have now is an expensive, ponderous, dissembling bureaucracy seemingly more focused on protecting its own image than upon safeguarding the wellbeing of vulnerable people and actively promoting best practice. We have a body with far too much on its plate and distracted by ancillary functions such as ratings systems.
Perhaps there needs to be yet another rethink.
- The CT Blog is written in a personal capacity – comments and opinions expressed are not necessarily endorsed or supported by Caring Times.