CQC inspections announced for the independent sector

Topics covered: Ridouts professional advice

From October 2014, the first new regime of CQC’s inspections will start.

Professor Sir Mike Richards, CQC’s chief inspector of hospitals, has identified eight hospitals that are going to be inspected under its new inspection approach. This will allow CQC to test its new model in different independent hospital settings. CQC expect to receive equivalent performance information from independent providers to what we receive from NHS hospitals.

These first inspections will help CQC refine the way the independent health care sector is inspected and help CQC develop a rating system in order to begin issuing ratings from April 2015.

The inspections will include announced and unannounced elements and may include inspections in the evenings and weekends, a time when people can experience poor care.

The core services being inspected will follow the same approach as in the NHS. These core services include:

·         surgery, including cosmetic surgery.

·         urgent care services.

·         medical care.

·         children and young people’s care.

·         outpatients.

Each inspection seeks to answer five questions – is the service:

·         safe?

·         caring?

·         effective?

·         well-led?

·         responsive to people’s needs?

Professor Sir Mike Richards said: “We need to hold the independent sector to the same standard as the NHS. As we have seen in the NHS, these new-style inspections will allow us to get under the skin of the organisation to give us a much more detailed picture of independent hospital care in England than ever before. We are significantly increasing public access to information on independent health care, which is good news for people who use services, as it will help people to make informed decisions about their care.”

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