CQC Transitional Regulatory Approach
CQC has announced how it will approach inspections as they resume from September. It aims to contact every social care provider by March.
During the period of the pandemic CQC has focused on its Emergency Support Framework (“ESF”). However from September it will be introducing a Transitional Regulatory Approach which will include the approach adopted through the ESF, but will also look at other issues. It has said that it will specifically target Key Lines of Enquiry (KLOEs) covering safety, access and leadership.
CQC suggests the risk of the coronavirus is receding. We will see whether that proves to be the case as we move into the autumn. There has been much talk of a second surge and if that materialises, providers (and, we would suggest, CQC) will need to respond to that.
It remains to be seen what the attitude of CQC will be to the pressures that all providers have faced over the last five months or so. If the access issue includes issues around visiting, what standards will they consider to assess how providers have addressed this (in the absence of any standardised approach to what has been a unique set of circumstances)? CQC has stated that it will balance users’ experiences of care with making an accurate assessment of the quality of care, whilst at the same time minimising infection control risks and not unnecessarily adding pressure to the systems that providers have in place. Hopefully they will take an understanding, subjective approach to the different presenting issues that each service will have faced.
Providers should ensure that they have a clear and continually updated response to the ESF, and they would be well advised to consider now their safety, access and leadership issues.
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