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Care Quality Commission launches consultation on excellence in social care - closes 1st August 2011

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kevin's picture
Joined: 09/03/2009

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) today announces the start of a consultation on a new excellence award for adult social care services in England. 

The new voluntary award, due to launch in April 2012, will be delivered by third party organisations under licence to CQC.

The consultation seeks people’s views on a definition of excellence, developed by the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE), and key aspects of the assessment process.

Cynthia Bower, CQC’s chief executive, said:

“Many social care services work tirelessly day in day out to provide the very best of care. That dedication should be recognised and people who are looking for care, either for themselves or for their loved ones, should have a way to identify these excellent providers. It’s important that we take in the views of people who use social care services, providers and commissioners on what they think excellent care should look like and how a service applying for the scheme should be measured and judged. I would strongly urge everyone to give us their views and help us shape the scheme.”

The consultation document asks the following questions:

  • Do you agree with SCIE’s definition of excellence?
  • What sort of evidence should be gathered to demonstrate excellence?
  • Should the scheme offer a pre-screening process for providers?
  • How long should the award last?
  • Under what circumstances would a provider lose the award?

The consultation runs until 1 August 2011


For further information please contact the CQC press office on 0207 448 9401 or out of hours on 07917 232 143.

You can find out more about the consultation and how to take part at the page below.

You can respond to our consultation in three ways:


By email

If you do not wish to use our online form, you can send us your responses by email. Please send these to:<

By post

You can write to us at:

Excellence Consultation
Care Quality Commission
103 – 105 Bunhill Row
FREEPOST Lon 15399

The Commission announced plans for the new award in February.

The Commission put the scheme out to tender for third parties at the end of March.

The CQC-backed award - due to launch in April 2012 - will be open to all social care providers offering regulated services, including care homes, domiciliary care, supported living and Share Lives services,  rehabilitation and residential substance misuse services.

The new award will be voluntary and subject to a proportionate charge. Providers who achieve the award will see it published on CQC's website, alongside their core 'provider profile' showing compliance with CQC's own essential standards (due to launch later this year).

The award will be delivered by third party organisations licensed by CQC. CQC wants there to be a number of schemes available nationwide so that care providers can choose a scheme which is most suitable and affordable to them.  Procurement for third party assessment bodies commenced on 21 April 2011.

Bodies who successfully apply to deliver the scheme will need to be accredited by the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS). CQC hopes to be able to offer licences to successful assessment bodies in the summer. Assessment schemes will need to be designed and tested to achieve UKAS accreditation by April 2012.

About the Care Quality Commission

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of all health and adult social care in England. Our aim is to make sure that better care is provided for everyone, whether it is in hospital, in care homes, in people's own homes, or anywhere else that care is provided. We also seek to protect the interests of people whose rights are restricted under the Mental Health Act. We promote the rights and interests of people who use services and we have a wide range of enforcement powers to take action on their behalf if services are unacceptably poor.

We are introducing a new regulatory system that brings the NHS, independent healthcare and adult social care under a single set of essential standards of quality and safety for the first time. We register health and adult social care services if they meet essential standards, we monitor them to make sure that they continue to do so and we respond quickly if there are concerns that standards are not being maintained.  We rely on people who use services and those who care for and treat them to tell us about the quality and safety of services. This feedback is a vital part of our dynamic system of regulation which places the views, experiences, health and wellbeing of people who use services at its centre.<