You are here

Improving how we respond to concerns about poor care

  • Public

Improving how we respond to concerns about poor care from the public and care professionals is a priority for us. Hearing their concerns is vital to helping inform when, where and what we inspect.

We have a three-year programme of work dedicated to ensuring we are more consistent and effective in how we do this. It will help us deliver the public engagement strategy we published earlier this year.

This strategy commits us to making sure:

  • more people from a wider range of population groups are enabled and encouraged to tell us about their views and experiences of care in a way that meets their individual needs
  • they are clear about what to expect when they share their information with us
  • they have a good experience when they do so.

Our work will also include encouraging and enabling staff who work in service providers and who have concerns about poor care – sometimes called whistleblowers – to contact us. We will:

  • Improve how we inspect and assess the way providers handle formal complaints from individual members of the public and concerns raised by staff. As part of all inspections we now ask questions about how people’s concerns and formal complaints are listened and responded to in order to improve the quality of care. We also ask about the action providers take after staff raise concerns. This information contributes to how we rate the performance of a care service.
  • Improve how we share information about poor care with other national bodies such as the complaints investigated by the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman about care homes.
  • Improve the experiences of members of the public and staff who contact us with information about poor care by being clearer about why we want the information and how we act on it.
  • Set up the office of the new National Speak-up Guardian who will support an improved culture of openness and support for staff raising concerns within the NHS.
  • Improve how we capture, record and assess the information we receive, and also how we report back on actions we have taken as a result.
  • Work with our partners in the health and care system who also receive concerns and complaints to ensure our work is joined up with theirs and the public are clear about our roles and responsibilities in this area.

We will update this page as this work develops over the next 18 months.

Last updated:
21 August 2018