CQC fees to rise in April
Caring Times, December 2016
Care home providers with 26-30 residents could see the fees they are charged by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) go up from £4,212 to £4,375 from next April.
The regulator proposes to increase the amount it charges these care homes by an extra £163 in 2017/18, according to the CQC’s consultation papers, published on 20 October.
The CQC says its budget, in relation to the overall spending on health and adult social care in England, remains at 0.16% and has promised to ‘look carefully’ at its costs, and to demonstrate that it is ‘fair, efficient, effective and proportionate’.
The CQC consultation runs until 11 January 2017. To read the consultation proposals visit: www.cqc.org.uk/content/regulatory-fees-201718-consultation
David Behan, chief executive of the regulator said: “We regulate over 30,000 health and adult social care providers and we set clear expectations of what good care looks like and when improvements need to be made. We will soon complete inspections of all services we rate.
“We know that our work is leading to better care – providers tell us our reports help identify areas for improvement, and we regularly see improvements when we re-inspect.
“Protecting the public in this way has a financial cost. The fees paid by providers enable us to fulfil our purpose of making sure health and social care services provide people with safe, effective, compassionate, high-quality care.”
Full cost recovery
Mr Behan added: “The consultation proposals we have published today follow the plans we set out last year to continue to meet the Treasury’s requirement to recover our chargeable costs in full from providers.”
Care England, which represents independent care providers, has expressed disappointment over CQC’s decision to raise care provider fees. Martin Green, the chief executive of Care England has taken issue with the principle of full cost recovery, which he argues if applicable to the regulator, should also be applicable to providers who should receive fees from local authorities and Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) that meet the costs of providing the care. The CQC fee rises will not be able to be recovered from public sector commissioners. Martin Green said: “As a member of the CQC Fees Advisory Panel, Care England made its views clear about increasing fee rates for providers.
“That the Department of Health has seen fit to give GPs additional funding to mitigate the increased fees is grossly unfair to the care sector, that is largely publicly funded and on which thousands of people rely, and which is the bedrock for an efficient and effective NHS.
“As the burden of regulatory costs shifts from the government to the care provider, CQC must understand that this places them in a customer supplier relationship with the care sector, and as customers, we will expect to see some very clear service standards.
“The CQC is accountable to the public and to the government for its judgement on the quality of care services, and this function has not changed. However, it is now also accountable to its customers, the health and social care sector, for its administrative processes and the services that it provides”.