New hospital inspection regime is underway in England
The Care Quality Commission has agreed to overhaul the way it carries out inspections so that poor care is exposed, following the Stafford Hospital scandal.
Mike Richards, the new chief inspector of hospitals, is leading the overhaul of inspections into hospitals to ensure care is being given correctly. This will be done through a larger and more specialised team, reports the BBC.
The inspectors will begin the first of eighteen inspections in Croydon before visiting other hospitals by the end of the year. After the inspection a public meeting will be held in Croydon which is what will happen after other inspections too.
Each inspection will cover eight key service areas: A&E, medical care, surgery, critical care, maternity, paediatrics, end-of-life care and outpatients.
Inspections will be a mixture of announced and unannounced visits and include evening and weekend inspections too. However previous inspections were grouped around essential standards so hospitals found that they were being inspection for issues including nutrition and infection control rather than the entire system.
Sir Mike said: “These inspections are designed to provide people with a clear picture of the quality of the services in their local hospital, exposing poor or mediocre care as well as highlighting areas of good and excellent care.
“We know there is too much variation in quality in the NHS – these new in-depth inspections will allow us to get a much more detailed picture of care in hospitals than ever before.”
Health Minister Norman Lamb said: “Our priority is to make sure that people get better care. That’s why we asked the CQC to appoint a new Chief Inspector of Hospitals to shine a spotlight on quality and drive up standards across the board.”
The CQC aims to have inspected all acute hospitals by the end of 2015 and the results will be published a month after each inspection.
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