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For adult social care providers

  • Organisations we regulate

This section is for providers and managers of adult social care services. It's where you'll find guidance on our new approach to regulating services, including information about registration and fees.

Our new approach

We began using our new approach to inspect and regulate adult social care services on 1 October 2014. We explain our approach in our provider handbooks and appendices for community and residential adult social care and hospice services.

About our new approach

Under our new approach:

  • We will put people who use services at the centre of our work – we will listen, involve and respond to people's experiences of care.
  • Inspections will be unannounced and teams will be tailored to the service they are inspecting – this will include an inspector and expert by experience, and may include a specialist adviser. The size of the team will depend on the size and complexity of the service being inspected.
  • We will use Intelligent Monitoring to decide when, where and what to inspect, the methods for listening better to people's experiences of care and using the best information across the system.
  • Inspectors will use professional judgement, supported by objective measures and evidence, to assess services against our five key questions:
    • Are they safe?
    • Are they effective?
    • Are they caring?
    • Are they responsive to people's needs?
    • Are they well-led?
  • We will rate services – these ratings will help people to compare services and to highlight where care is outstanding, good, requires improvement or inadequate.
  • Our inspectors will use a standard set of key lines of enquiry (KLOEs) that directly relate to the five key questions – are they safe, effective, caring, responsive and well-led? This will ensure consistency and focus on those areas that matter most.

How to get involved

We have developed our new approach by working with providers, people who use services and other key partners.

We'll continue to work with providers and other stakeholders to make sure that the development of our approach reflects their views.

Join our online community

Our online community allows providers to give feedback on our ideas and draft documents.

Case studies

Encouraging improvement

In January 2015, we awarded the first outstanding ratings in adult social care. Read about them here:

More about our work

Read about our Chief Inspector and find out about our work in adult social care.

CQC Provider Portal

Most registered providers can now use our Provider Portal to keep their registration up to date and to send us notifications. It's the fastest, easiest way to send us application forms and notify us about changes, events and incidents.

Not yet registered?

You can now apply to register as a new provider online. It's the fastest, easiest way to complete your application.

Last updated:
4 March 2016