Why the Care Quality Commission Rating is Important

About the Care Quality Commission

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the UK independent regulator of health and social care. They monitor, inspect and regulate services to ensure they meet agreed fundamental standards of quality and safety. They publish what they find with their performance ratings.

The CQC carry out regular checks on service providers and involves meetings with staff, observing care and reviewing records. The objective is to obtain a complete understanding of the level of care provided.

The CQC ask 5 fundamental questions during an inspection:

  1. Are they safe? Are they protected from abuse and avoidable harm.
  2. Are they effective? The care, treatment and support achieves good outcomes, helps to maintain quality of life and is based on the best available evidence.
  3. Are they caring? The staff must treat people with compassion, kindness, dignity and respect.
  4. Are they responsive to people’s needs? Services are organised so they meet needs.
  5. Are they well-led? The leadership, management and governance of the organisation makes sure it’s providing high-quality care that’s based around individual needs, that it encourages learning and innovation, and that it promotes an open and fair culture.

From their findings a detailed report is produced and they apply a rating of outstanding, good, requires improvement or inadequate.

If the CQC find the level of care is inadequate they have delegated powers to take action against those responsible. Actions include:

  • Using requirement or warning notices to set out what improvements the care provider must make and by when.
  • Making changes to a care provider’s registration to limit what they may deliver.
  • Placing a provider in special measures, where they closely supervise the quality of care while working with other organisations to help them improve within set timescales.
  • Hold the care provider to account for their failings by issuing simple cautions, fines or prosecuting where people are harmed or placed in danger of harm.

The CQC rating is important because it is a standard inspection rating across all care providers enabling you to knowledgeably compare providers.

How to use the CQC Rating

If you are already using the services of a care provider it is a good idea to understand how they are rated. Whilst you may be delighted with the service you are receiving, the professional inspection teams of the CQC are comparing care homes to a standard list of requirements and are looking at every aspect of the care home. It is good to know that it isn’t just your hands on carer that you can rely on, but also the whole organisation.

If you are uncomfortable with any aspect of the inspection report then you should be able to discuss the report with them. It may be that any issues raised are immediately being addressed and there is nothing to worry about.

If you are looking for a new care service provider then the CQC is a good place to start as the site provides a search facility for services in your area. It’s important though to bear in mind that service providers with a “requires improvement” status may well be working hard to fix any outstanding issues. As with any care service you need to visit the provider and make your own assessment. Recommendations through trusted friends or colleagues are invaluable too.

If you would like to discuss the Lillyfields Care Inspection Report please contact us.


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43-45 Swiss House
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Petersfield Hampshire GU32 3DY
Tel: 01730 233133/233500
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