Care Quality Commission; Updates taking effect 1st July 2022
Health Care Act 2022
In the wake of the Health Care Act 2022, health and social care providers registered with CQC are now under an obligation to ensure that all staff supporting people with a learning disability or autism should receive training on learning disabilities and autism appropriate to their role. This requirement will take effect as of the 1st July 2022.
This change has come about following the tragic death of Oliver McGowan; an autistic 18 year old with learning disabilities, who died after complications in his care at the hospital. You can read more about Oliver’s story here
Following the introduction of this new legal requirement, a Code of Practice will be consulted on and published by the Government, which will aim to cover the content, delivery and ongoing monitoring of the Oliver McGowan Mandatory Training.
To reflect this, the CQC have updated their statutory guidance on their website for Regulation 18 while the Code of Practice is being developed. Furthermore, the CQC will be checking whether its registered providers are training their staff in line with the new regulation and whether they have assessed the competencies of their staff upon completion of training.
Whilst CQC will not be looking into what the training itself involves, they will continue to liaise closely with the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) on this training requirement.
You can find the CQC’s updated guidance here
Duty of Candour Guidance
The Duty of Candour is a professional responsibility to be open and honest with patients and families when something that goes wrong with their treatment or care causes, or has the potential to cause, harm or distress.
Following a number of queries, the CQC have updated their Duty of Candour guidance to shed light on how the term ‘unexpected or unintended’ should be applied when trying to define whether or not something qualifies as a notifiable safety incident.
Notifiable safety incident
‘Notifiable safety incident’ is a specific term defined in the duty of candour regulation and should not be confused with other types of safety incidents or notifications.
If any of these three criteria are not met, it is not a notifiable safety incident.
A notifiable safety incident must meet all 3 of the following criteria:
- It must have been unintended or unexpected.
- It must have occurred during the provision of an activity regulated by the CQC.
- In the reasonable opinion of a healthcare professional, already has, or might, result in death, or severe or moderate harm to the person receiving care. This element varies slightly depending on the type of provider.
The CQC have now stated that “unexpected or unintended ” should be interpreted in relation to an incident which arises in the course of the regulated activity, not to the outcome of the incident. “Regulated activity” refers to the care or treatment provided. “Outcome” refers to the harm that occurred or could have occurred. Therefore, if the treatment or care provided went as intended, and as expected, an incident may not qualify as a Notifiable Safety Incident, even if harm occurred.
If you need advice or assistance with CQC requirements or inspections, please contact our team at firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 0207 388 1658.
Sonia Alleear, Overseas Qualified Barrister
Please note that the information contained in this article was correct at the time of writing. There may have been updates to the law since the article was written which may affect the information and advice given therein.