Regulator publishes latest Covid-19 insight report: issue 4

In this month’s report, the Care Quality Commission focus on infection prevention and control (IPC) in different health and care settings and the ways services across 11 regions have collaborated in response to the coronavirus. This report also coincides with the CQC’s statement on how they will regulate services during the next phase of the pandemic. From 6 October, the regulator will roll out its transitional regulatory approach starting with adult social care services. Its inspections will be “more targeted and focused on where they have concerns”, without returning to a routine programme of planned inspections, it says.

What can we take away from the CQC’s insight report ? Here’s our headline summary.

Infection Prevention Control

There is much to digest with learning about good practice in IPC from acute hospital trusts to GP surgeries and care homes. The CQC conducted a special programme of inspections in August covering 300 care homes selected as potential examples of where IPC was being done well – and the findings are positive so far: with very few services requiring a fuller inspection and more than 90 per cent assurance across all the elements of the inspection. In addition, several good practice examples were highlighted as part of the inspection process.

To find out more, section 1 of the report covers IPC and the care home feedback but CQC plan to report fully on the finding of this programme in November.

Provider Collaborative Reviews

The speed and scale of the response required by the pandemic has highlighted the importance of collaboration and partnership across the health and care system. The CQC’s work to date has focused on 11 areas; these are all Integrated Care Systems (ICS) or Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships (STP) and the reviews focused on health and social care for people over 65. A number of themes and learning has emerged following the CQC’s deep dive review into each of the local areas – and so far this what they can see:

  • Understanding population needs was important
  • Existing relationships between local providers played a key role in coordination and delivery of joined up health and social care services
  • Increased focus on shared planning and system wide governance
  • Staff across the system worked above and beyond their roles
  • Initiatives to support the safety and wellbeing of staff on both the front line and in support services
  • Move to digital working accelerated and impacted on access to services, with more digital solutions supported data-sharing and communication between health and social care partners and within organisations

CQC says it will publish its further findings in this year’s State of Care report expected in October.

Only yesterday the CQC announced its next phase of PCRs will focus on urgent and emergency care in eight systems. These PCRs build on the Local System Reviews they were commissioned by the Government to carry out in 2017/18 and the resulting recommendations CQC made on system working.

Section 2 of the report has further detail on the PCRs.

CQC data

Section 3 of the report covers the regulator’s updated data to include details of outbreaks and staff absences in homecare services, deaths notified by care homes and the numbers of deaths of people detained under the Mental Health Act (both Covid and non Covid related).

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