Top 10 tips when preparing for CQC (Care Quality Commission) inspection

All providers of health and social care in England should be aware of the legal requirement to register with the Care Quality Commission (CQC). However, how well prepared is your organisation for the pending inspection to ensure you are providing care in accordance with the CQC’s standards and regulations? The following tips will help you in the run up to a visit from the inspectors.

1. Be aware of the different types of inspection

On the day of the inspection, the inspector will inform you of which type of inspection will be carried out. These are:
1) Responsive – in response to specific concerns
2) Themed – looking at current issues of a specific theme
3) Scheduled – Booked in advance for certain kinds of service, where the inspectors inform you of the type of inspection to be carried out.

2. Notify CQC of any changes or incidents

You must tell CQC about certain changes, events and incidents affecting your service or its beneficiaries. This can be done via the Provider Portal (your online account) or by using forms to submit, available from https://www.cqc.org.uk/content/notifications

3. Ensure you have up to date information

Current and correct information demonstrates your compliance and expertise. Some items such health and safety documents and business continuity plans will be requested on the day of the inspection.

4. Ensure you have the Registered Manager’s contact details

When you registered, you should have provided the Registered Manager’s contact details. It is essential to have these to hand in case this person is not available at the start of the inspection.

5. Make all service users and staff aware of what happens during an inspection

Inspectors will talk to various staff members during their visit to collect evidence, as well as observe care and review people’s records to see how their needs are managed.

6. Book and prepare a suitable room

The inspectors must have access to a suitable room for interviews and so forth.

7. Remember what inspectors will be looking for

Inspectors will actually be collecting evidence of any essential standards that are not being met, so closely look at the standards beforehand.

8. Have a practice walkthrough

The service manager or deputy should take responsibility to walk through all areas of your services. Keep a checklist of these to stay on track.

9. Ensure that you carry on with your everyday services

In order for inspectors to look at what you do, you must continue carrying out your services as normal on the day of the inspection.

10. Always bear in mind the key five questions of the inspection

Are your services Safe; Effective; Caring; Responsive to People’s Needs; and Well-led?

This last point is an essential one which relates to complying with the ever important CQC’s standards. However, do take into account all the tips here to make sure that your service is inspection-ready.