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23rd September 2014

CQC Fundamental Standards Update

Update ConceptQCS will continue to keep you up to date with the changes and will let you know when our new policies are ready to access. At present, we expect this to be within 10 days of the release of the final version of the KLOEs on the 25th September. This depends on the amount of changes that are made by the CQC.

There will also be some exciting new features to accompany these changes after the full provider handbook is released in October.

The National Care Association have asked us to distribute the message below from the CQC in relation to the new fundamental standards.

The CQC have said –

“Testing of our new ‘Fresh Start’ adult social care inspection methodology is drawing to a successful close and we will be introducing our new methodology from 1 October 2014.

The Fresh Start methodology includes rating services. The ratings answer our ‘Mum Test’ questions: Is the service safe, effective, caring, responsive to people’s needs, and well led? There will be a rating for each question and an overall rating. Ratings will be based on a four point scale; ‘Outstanding’, ‘Good’, Requires Improvement’, or ‘Inadequate’.

We will rate services by following the ‘Key Lines of Enquiry’ (KLOEs) during inspections and assessing our findings against the ‘Characteristics of Ratings’. There are different KLOEs and Characteristics for different kinds of services; you can read them on the CQC website here [these will be published on our website next Thursday – 25 September].

Where a key question is rated as ‘Requires Improvement’ or ‘Inadequate’ we will make a judgement about whether a regulation has been breached. New ‘fundamental standards’ regulations had been due to come into force on 1 October 2014, but delays in the Parliamentary process mean that they will now be introduced in April 2015. This means that until then CQC will continue to use the existing regulations, guidance about compliance (the ‘Essential Standards of Quality and Safety’), and enforcement policy to support our judgements about whether breaches have occurred and how we will respond to them.

The new ‘Fundamental Standards’ regulations are more focused and clear about the care that people should always expect to receive. They include new requirements about the directors and boards of organisations being ‘fit and proper persons’, and a new ‘Duty of Candour’ on providers to be open and honest with people who use their service when things go wrong with their care and treatment. CQC is currently consulting about a draft new enforcement policy that will replace the existing guidance about compliance and enforcement policy. The draft policy includes the new regulations, guidance about meeting them, and how we will use our powers. You can read it and take part in the consultation by clicking here.

The final provider handbooks, setting out CQC’s full regulatory approach to inspecting adult social care services, will publish on 9 October.”

If you have any further questions then you can contact the NCA on 01634 716 615 or by emailing


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