NHS Choices – the website to help people choose care homes

A new service to help people find the right type of care they need for themselves or family members has been launched by the Department of Health.

The new care profiles on the NHS Choices website provide the most comprehensive source of information on care services. Launched by Care and Support Minister, Norman Lamb, they help people to search and compare residential care homes and home care services and make confident choices.

The profiles bring together information from a variety of sources, including:
•    official information from Care Quality Commission inspection reports
•    information from care providers on the specialist services and facilities
•    comments from the public, service users, residents and their families
•    from next month, the ability for the public to give services star ratings
•    official Ofsted-style rating for care services, when they are introduced

The profiles sit alongside easy to reference information on entitlements to care, paying for care, organising a care need assessment and other practical advice.

More than 8,000 care providers have already added information about their services to their profile on the website, and many more are expected to do so.

Care and Support Minister Norman Lamb said: “A fully open, transparent and comprehensive service like this will leave bad care nowhere to hide. This means better standards and quality of care across the board.

“By reading about the experiences of others, people can make confident choices about their care and help providers know where to make improvements, if needed.”

Over the coming months, care homes and other registered care and support services will be able to add details on how they perform against specific standards such as number of falls, bed sores, medication management and training of staff, as well as missed and on-time visits for homecare.

The site will also allow care providers to reply to comments from the public, so that they can explain to people why they operate in a particular way and, if relevant, what they are doing to improve things so providers and the public can have an open conversation.

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