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The Care Quality Commission checks whether hospitals, care homes and care services are meeting government standards. Visit our website at www.cqc.org.uk.

Issues affecting the delivery of good home care services

13 February 2013

The findings of our review of home care services show that good care is being delivered, but a minority of people are affected by late or missed calls, lack of continuity of care workers, poor care planning and more.

We began our review of home care services in April 2012. Throughout the review, we found that 74 per cent of the 250 services we inspected are meeting all five of the National standards we checked.

However, we have concerns around the following areas.

  • On many occasions, people received no prior notice that they would be visited by a care worker they didn’t know.
  • Visits were often delayed or sometimes cancelled without prior notice.
  • Risks associated with a person’s care or medical conditions had not been assessed and care plans had not been updated for several years.
  • Some services did not have clear systems to monitor the quality and information in care plans.

David Behan, CQC Chief Executive, said: “People have a right to expect to be treated as an individual, to be able to exercise choice, and to make sure their carers are aware of their specific care needs. We found plenty of evidence of this however we also found elements of poor care which happen too often.”

Services must now work more closely with commissioners to improve care, find solutions to these common problems and put systems in place to monitor the impact of missed or late visits.

You can read more about our findings and our other recommendations in our full report below.

More about our review of home care services

The review looked at whether people receiving care at home are treated with dignity and respect, have a choice about the care they receive and benefit from effective systems to keep them safe.

We wanted to gather as many experiences as possible. During the review we:

  • inspected 250 services providing care to 26,419 people.
  • gathered the views of more than 4,600 people.
  • visited 738 people in their own homes.

Our inspectors were also supported by our Experts by experience (people who have received care).