Ridouts has recently assisted a care home provider to make successful representations to a Notice of Proposal (“NOP”) from the CQC to cancel its registration under Section 17(1)(c) of the Health and Social Care Act 2008.
CQC alleged that there had been breaches of Regulation 12 relating to safe care and treatment and Regulation 17 relating to good governance. In making its decision to issue a NOP, CQC also took into account the service’s “history of non-compliance” which related to overall CQC ratings of ‘Requires Improvement’ or ‘Inadequate’ ratings over a number of years. CQC alleged that this was, “…evidence of a history of failing to respond adequately to sustained and serious concerns raised by CQC.”
Ridouts worked closely with the provider to secure appropriate evidence and successfully argued the following points:
- CQC’s proposed action to cancel the provider’s registration was premature.
- Improvements had and continued to be made at the service.
- CQC did not have sufficient grounds to warrant the cancellation of the service’s registration.
Following representations the CQC decided not to adopt the NOP and the provider’s registration has been secured.
Ridouts is a specialist regulatory law firm providing legal, operational and strategic advice to health and social care providers who are faced with matters that could negatively impact their businesses.
Ridouts highly experienced staff team are well equipped to assist with complex queries relating to all aspects of the provision of health and social care services.
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This case draws attention to a very important issue that all providers should consider challenging adverse CQC inspection reports and adverse ratings at an early stage.
If you receive a draft inspection report from the CQC which rates your service as ‘Requires Improvement’ or ‘Inadequate’, and you have evidence to challenge this rating, it is important to do so. By challenging adverse ratings at an early stage, you are more likely to prevent escalating enforcement action (such as a NOP to cancel your registration) from the CQC further down the line.
This case demonstrates that if you receive a NOP to cancel your registration, with appropriate legal advice and support, NOP representations can be upheld and CQC’s proposal to cancel a service’s registration may not be adopted.