The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of all health and social care services in England. Their job is to make sure that health and care provided by hospitals, dentists, ambulances, care homes and services in people’s own homes and elsewhere meets national standards of safety, effectiveness, compassion and high quality. They also encourage care services to improve. They do this by:
- Registering care services that meet the standards.
- Monitoring, inspecting and regulating care services to make sure that they continue to meet the standards.
- Protecting the rights of vulnerable people, including those whose rights are restricted under the Mental Health Act.
- Listening to and acting on your experiences.
- Involving the public and people who receive care in their work and working in partnership with other organisations and local groups.
- Challenging all providers, with the worst performers getting the most attention.
- Making fair and authoritative judgements, supported by the best information and evidence.
- Taking appropriate action if care services are failing to meet fundamental standards of quality and safety.
- Carrying out in-depth investigations to look at care across the system.
- Reporting on the quality of care services, publishing clear and comprehensive information, including performance ratings to help people choose care.
The CQC work with the Trust Development Authority (now called NHS Improvement) and Monitor to make judgements about how well-led NHS providers are.