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A Senior Woman in Wheelchair with a visitor | Care Home Information

CQC to develop fundamental standard for care home visits

CQC will develop a new fundamental standard on visiting, the government has announced following its consultation on visiting in care homes and other establishments.

Through this new standard, CQC will be able to specifically include visiting considerations as part of its wider regulatory assessment of providers. This could include using civil enforcement powers in line with its published enforcement policy.  

The move comes in response to the government’s consultation, Visiting in care homes, hospitals and hospices, published on 21 June.

Respondents to the consultation said that they found government guidance on visiting unclear, and that strict visiting times and complicated complaints processes were some of the barriers to visiting in health and care settings.

The government also says it will include in the fundamental standards that residents should be encouraged to take visits out of the care home to support their wellbeing. There will also be changes to care homes’ complaints processes.

However, the standards will allow for ‘exceptional circumstances’ or ‘reasonable explanations’ where a provider may restrict visiting, for example, to maintain the safety and wellbeing of service users and staff. 

Current guidance encourages visiting, particularly, at end-of-life.

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