The Care Quality Commission has set out what ‘Outstanding’, ‘Good’, ‘Requires Improvement’ and ‘Inadequate’ Adult Social Care would look like across each of the key areas it will routinely inspect services against.
From next month, CQC will roll out its new approach to regulating Adult Social Care in England. Specialist teams, including trained members of the public, referred to as Experts by Experience, will inspect services against what matters most to the people who use them – are they safe, caring, effective, responsive to their needs, and well-led.
CQC will then rate these services as Outstanding, Good, Requires Improvement and Inadequate so that the public has clear information to help them make choices about their care.
Following its public consultation and testing earlier this year, CQC has published the questions – called key lines of enquiry – that its inspection teams will use to guide them on their visits, as well as descriptions of what care would look like for each of these ratings.
The guidance will be used by CQC’s inspection teams when they inspect care homes and community services to help them be consistent when making their judgements. For care providers, it can help them to understand the sorts of things that CQC’s inspection teams will be focusing on and help to know what CQC will be looking for when awarding its ratings.
Andrea Sutcliffe, chief inspector of Adult Social Care said: "The key lines of enquiry and ratings characteristics are an important part of our new approach to inspecting and rating Adult Social Care in England, which we will roll out formally from next month.
"They will allow our inspectors to really get under the skin of adult social care services across England so that providers know what we are expecting.
"The key lines of enquiry and ratings characteristics have been developed after extensive engagement, testing and consultation with people who use services, carers, providers, commissioners and national partners. I am very grateful to everyone who has been involved in helping to shape and design the questions we will ask and the characteristics of the ratings. I am sure that this will mean people can be confident in the judgements our inspections will make."
CQC has published separate key lines of enquiry and ratings characteristics for residential (care homes, with and without nursing) and community services (when people receive care in their own homes, including Shared Lives and supported living services).