Requirement for providers to display CQC ratings

Topics covered: Ridouts professional advice

All providers should now be aware of the new requirement for health and care providers to make arrangements to prominently display their CQC rating. The requirement is included in the Health and Social Care Act (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2014 which came into force on 1 April 2015.

Providers are allowed a maximum period of 21 calendar days to display their ratings from the date the inspection report is published on CQC’s website. However, providers who have already been rated by CQC have until 21 April 2015 (21 days from 1 April 2015) to comply with the requirement. The failure to display ratings appropriately constitutes a criminal offence and providers in breach of the regulation may be subject to a fine of up to £100 or alternative action by CQC as described in the guidance and CQC’s enforcement policy.

CQC recently issued guidance on how the ratings should be displayed. The guidance includes suggested posters for display that include all of the information required and which will be considered as a benchmark by CQC when assessing the adequacy of providers’ display of ratings at individual services. If providers decide not to use the CQC posters then they will be required to demonstrate that what they do use is at least as conspicuous and legible as the CQC poster. Providers are required to display the information both physically, as directed in the guidance, and on their website if they have one.

Commenting on the display of ratings CQC’s Chief Executive, David Behan, said “We know that our ratings are an important source of information to support people’s choice of service and the aim of this new requirement is all about helping to achieve better awareness and greater transparency for members of the public about which care services are Outstanding, Good, Require Improvement or Inadequate. I am determined for CQC to be on the side of people, and their families, who are receiving health and adult social care services so they can get access to safe, high quality and compassionate services that they have absolutely every right to expect.”

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