From 1 April 2010, the regulation of health and adult social care in England will change. Legislation is bringing in a new system that applies to all regulated health and adult social care services.
All health and adult social care providers, who provide regulated activities, will be required by law to register with the Care Quality Commission. Subject to the new legislation, new registration comes into effect on 1 April 2010 for NHS trusts (including primary care trusts) and 1 October 2010 for adult social care and independent healthcare providers.
By law, the CQC is required to produce guidance about compliance. This makes clear to providers what they need to do to be compliant with the new regulations. The new regulations will replace the existing Standards for Better Health and the National Minimum Standards. There are similar themes from these in the new guidance about compliance. Some of the evidence that providers used to demonstrate they met the old standards can be used for the new standards.
The CQC stresses, however, that it is important that providers begin to develop new systems which show how they:
- deliver positive outcomes for people who use services;
- capture information about how people experience the services they provide.
Unlike the National Minimum Standards and Standards for Better Health, the guidance about compliance has an enhanced legal status. It can be used as evidence in criminal or civil proceedings and the CQC has stated that it will use it in their enforcement action.
The CQC website is the definitive source of information on the new registration system and will be regularly updated. Find out more, including all about the developing guidance to underpin the new system of registration, here.