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Our strategy and business plan

  • Public

We are making radical changes to the way we inspect and regulate health and social care services to make sure they provide people with safe, effective, compassionate and high-quality care, and to encourage services to make improvements.

These changes will help make sure that, above all else, we are always on the side of people who use services, and that we always put their interests first.

The changes we are making are set out below. They apply to most services and have been developed with our staff, providers of health and social care services, the public and others.

What are we doing?

  • In 2013 we appointed three Chief Inspectors with responsibility for hospitals, for adult social care, and for GPs and primary care.
  • We ask the same five questions of all the services we inspect - are they safe, effective, caring, well led and responsive to people's needs?
  • We have developed new fundamental standards which focus on these five areas.
  • We make sure that inspectors specialise in particular areas of care and lead teams that include clinical and other experts, including Experts by Experience (people with experience of care).
  • We have introduced national teams in NHS hospitals that have specialist expertise to carry out in-depth reviews of hospitals with significant or long-standing problems.
  • We have introduced a clear programme in failing NHS trusts to make sure immediate action is taken to protect people.
  • We predict, identify and respond more quickly to services that are failing, or are likely to fail, by using information and evidence in a more focused and open way, including listening better to people’s views and experiences of care.
  • We will continue to improve our understanding of how well different care services work together by listening to people's experiences of moving between different services.
  • We work closely with our partners in the health and social care system to improve the quality and safety of care and co-ordinate our work better.
  • We are publishing better information for the public, including ratings that show whether care services are outstanding, good, require improvement or inadequate.
  • We are introducing a more thorough test for organisations that are applying to provide care, including making sure that named directors, managers and leaders commit to meeting our standards and are tested on their ability to do so.
  • We have strengthened the protection of people whose rights are restricted under the Mental Health Act.
  • We are building a high-performing organisation that is well run and led, has an open culture that supports its staff, and is focused on delivering its purpose.

These changes came into effect in NHS hospitals and mental health trusts first. This is because we recognise that there is an urgent need for more effective inspection and regulation of these services. We will then extend and adapt our approach to other sectors in 2014 to 2016.

Download our full strategy for more information on the changes we will be making to our work.

Our strategy for 2013 to 2016 PDF | 644.33 KB

Business plan for 2015/16

Our business plan outlines our key priorities for 2015/16 and the work we will do to achieve them.

Visit business plan for detailed information on how we will achieve our purpose.

Last updated:
9 April 2015