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When we will inspect NHS trusts

  • Organisations we regulate

We aim to inspect each trust at least once between June 2017 and spring 2019 in our next phase of regulation, and approximately annually after that.

However we may come back any time in the year if we think it is necessary. Our contact with your trust will be frequent and targeted. We will use information from our relationship management meetings and CQC Insight to inform our discussion about when and what to inspect.

Frequency of inspections of core-services and well-led

We will use a trust’s previous ratings as a guide to setting maximum intervals for re-inspecting its core services alongside its inspection of the well-led key question. For example, we will re-inspect after:

  • one year for core services rated as inadequate
  • two years for core services rated as requires improvement
  • three and a half years for core services rated as good
  • five years for core services rated as outstanding.

This is only a guide and we will also take into account other factors when deciding which core services to inspect.

We will take into account the trust’s own assessment of the quality of its core services. If the trust tells us that services have improved, we will inspect them wherever we can.

Use of resources

We will work with NHS Improvement once it has assessed a trust’s use of resources at the trust-wide level. These started in autumn 2017 and will form part of NHS Improvement’s approach to regulation and improvement. In autumn/winter 2017/18, we will pilot the way we link these use of resources assessments with our current inspection, rating and reporting processes. As part of the testing for this pilot, we may publish some of the initial use of resources assessments alongside our existing inspection reports, which will include indicative or ‘shadow’ ratings.

Last updated:
16 October 2017


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