Understanding the CQC’s 5 Standards of Care

 In Blog, Moving into Care

Overview of CQC standards

CQC standards are judged upon five determining factors. These include whether the service is Safe, Effective, Caring, Responsive and Well-led.

These qualities are set out by the Care Quality Commission and ensure services regulated by the CQC deliver high quality, reputable services. Each individual standard is judged by a number of evidence-based factors, called KLOE’s (Key Lines of Enquiry).

Each of the CQC Key Lines of Enquiry sit within one of the CQC 5 Standards. The KLOEs are like the building blocks that make up each of the 5 standards.

What is the Care Quality Commission?

The Care Quality Commission is the independent regulator for health and adult social care and oversees the provision and delivery of care services in England. They are the cornerstone of quality assurance in the UK’s health and social care sector.

They play a crucial role in maintaining high standards of care in GP practices, ambulance services to care homes and domiciliary care providers.

The importance of CQC Standards

The CQC’s 5 standards are imperative for monitoring and improving the delivery of care across the country. Understanding these standards is vital for any care provider aiming to deliver excellent service and achieve a positive CQC rating.

They help maintain positive safety and quality, protecting those in need of care. It also ensures that key care professionals have a standard to work towards when providing care. 

The CQC’s 5 standards ensure that there is trust and reliability within the care system. As care services across England are regulated and reviewed, those seeking care can feel at ease with the choice they make.

Standard 1: Safe

Ensuring the safety of residents and staff in a healthcare setting is at the heart of every successful care service. This CQC safety standard protects individuals from abuse, harm and unsafe conditions and medical practices.

To ensure care settings are safe, CQC delves into various aspects of a healthcare service. These include but not limited to:

– Implementation of robust safeguarding policies

– The management and administration of medication.

– Reviewing the preventative measures taken to protect against infection and disease. 

– Dealing with and acting upon feedback. 

– Conducting regular risk assessments and monitoring safety.

– Providing appropriate training for employees in managing emergencies and challenging scenarios.

Standard 2: Effective

The effectiveness of care, treatment and support provided to service users is the second standard.

To ensure that care is effective, it should be supported by credible evidence, guidance and practices that have been proven to achieve positive outcomes in the past. This care can include holistic, mental or physical health. Key components of an effective service include promotion of good nutrition and hydration. Care homes should regularly review care plans to meet changing needs.

Effectiveness of a service is also measured by the knowledge and skills of staff within the service, how they work with other teams and outside organisations, accessibility of the premises and how the service provides the support needed for individuals to live healthier lives.

Standard 3: Caring

The third standard emphasises the importance of delivering care compassionately, with kindness, dignity and respect. This can include how an organisation provides emotional support, listens to feedback and acts upon it accordingly.

At Lidder Care, we provide compassionate care that is tailored to each individual. All care is provided to residents with dignity and adapts as a residents’ care needs and preferences evolve. Our care grows with the resident and is always delivered with compassion, competence, courage and commitment. We provide emotional support and comfort and where possible, encourage and support independence.

Standard 4: Responsive

As a care service provider, being responsive to changing needs and queries, ensures that care is tailored to each individual and concerns are addressed promptly.

As a care service, it is important to be adaptable with the services you provide. Lidder Care’s compassionate care services respond to suggestions from residents and their loved ones. This doesn’t stop at our care; we support residents to continue taking part in hobbies and interests of their own.

All care should be personalised and respond to the needs of residents, and there should be robust implementation of effective complaint handling procedures.  At Lidder we are successfully responsive in that we continuously improve services based on feedback.

Standard 5: Well-led

The final standard focuses on ensuring healthcare services are well-led, governed and overseen effectively. This is a vital step in achieving a successful, quality and compassionate service. This part of the CQC’s standards evaluates management staff, their leadership and their practices.

Leadership teams in healthcare services are evaluated through their vision and strategy and whether they promote a person-centred service that delivers high quality care and support. 

This standard also centres on effective governance and management, engagement and involvement with those using the service, their employees and their residents and their ability to encourage development and improvement.

At Lidder Care, we promote a clear vision and set of values and encourage open communication and teamwork. We support staff development and wellbeing and this is cemented by our strong, effective leadership at all levels.

How Standards are Evaluated

The CQC standards provide a comprehensive framework for delivering high-quality, safe and compassionate care. Prioritising these standards will help to build a reputation for excellence and trust in the community. The CQC Standards are assessed by a rating of Outstanding, Good, Requires Improvement or inadequate. 

The CQC inspection process

The CQC inspection process is a thorough process which involves a variety of stages. A site visit, which may be unannounced, may include but will not be limited to observation of care provided to residents, interviews with the care team and residents and examination of care documents. 

Following a visit, a report, ratings and feedback is provided to the relevant care service.

How care providers can meet these standards

To truly embed the CQC 5 Standards into the fabric of your organisation it is important to regularly train employees on CQC standards and best practices. The feedback mechanisms need to be robust so that there are proper systems in place for collecting and acting on feedback from service users, their families and the care team. Fostering a culture of excellence is paramount so there is continuous improvement and accountability. Leadership at all levels should strive to uphold and promote the CQC standards.

Enquire today

At Lidder Care, we provide a wide range of tailored, specialist nursing and residential care services.

To discuss the next steps to arranging care at our residential care home  or nursing home, you can contact a member of our friendly team today.