Today I am publishing a consultation response, which is the latest stage in the development of the new system we are introducing for the regulation of health and adult social care.
The publication, “Response to consultation on the draft regulations for the framework for the registration of health and adult social care providers” sets out our response to our previous consultation on the draft regulations that will govern the new registration system1. It describes how the wording of the draft regulations we have today laid before Parliament has changed since the consultation process. It also details changes in the policy for a further set of regulations, which we intend to lay later this autumn.
The draft regulations, to be made under the powers provided for in the Health and Social Care Act 2008, set out the detail of the new registration framework to be operated by the Care Quality Commission. This, subject to approval by Parliament, will be introduced for the NHS in April 2010 and for private and voluntary health care and adult social care from October 2010.
Earlier this year, Parliament approved regulations made under these powers to regulate NHS providers against a requirement about cleanliness and infection control. Since 1 April this year, NHS providers have been required to register with the Care Quality Commission and comply with the requirement on cleanliness and infection control.
These draft regulations laid today set out who needs to register with the Care Quality Commission (scope of registration) and what they need to do to register and remain registered (registration requirements).
The new approach will mean that patients and people using services will have the same level of assurance of the quality and safety of their care and treatment, whether it is being provided by the NHS, local government, private or third sectors
The registration requirements are designed to address the concerns of people using health and adult social care services, covering the topics on which they want assurance. They provide clarity about the essential levels of safety and quality all providers must deliver for people who use their services, without being prescriptive about how providers run their services.
The registration system will operate alongside a wider quality improvement framework that encourages not just good care, but excellent care. The Commission will have a role in contributing to ongoing quality improvement as part of the wider quality framework, particularly through its publication of comparable information in periodic reviews, and its power to conduct special reviews into areas of particular interest.
This publication will be of interest to anyone providing or working in health and adult social care, and to patients and people using services, who are interested in how the reforms are going to improve these services.
Today’s publication has been placed in the Library and copies are available to hon. Members from the Vote Office.
1Response to consultation on the framework for the registration of health and adult social care providers and consultation on draft regulations.