Reporting and sharing information

Page last updated: 23 February 2024

What our reporting will look like

When we have gathered enough evidence across the quality statements, we will publish assessment reports for local authorities on our website.

Assessing local authorities is a new role for CQC, so we have added calibration panels as a temporary additional step in the quality assurance process.

These panels will review and validate the scores and ratings from the assessments to make sure they provide a reliable and consistent view of quality across local authorities. The panel will include both internal and external representatives.

Our reports will be clear about when we last assessed evidence and when ratings were updated. They will:

  • include a short summary of the key features of the local authority
  • show our most up-to-date findings against the themes and for each quality statement
  • focus on people’s experiences of care, including:
    • what people have said about their experience
    • how we used it in our assessments.
  • include a description of:
    • areas that need to improve
    • areas of strength and good practice
    • whether the local authority is moving in the right direction.

Local authorities will be able to check the factual accuracy and completeness of evidence used in the draft report. There will be a short period between the assessment and when we publish the final report on our website.

Publishing ratings under the assessment process

We will only start to publish scores and ratings for local authorities once we have gathered enough evidence to make a judgement. 

When we publish ratings, we will publish the:

  • overall rating
  • score for each quality statement.

The score will indicate where a local authority sits within a rating, showing whether it is nearer the upper or lower threshold.

We quality-assure our processes and reports to check that our view of quality is reliable. If we identify anomalies, we will update our approach accordingly.

A rating may not change on our website every time we review and update a score at quality statement level. But we will indicate that we have reviewed the quality statement score and make clear when this has happened. We will always update our website when a rating moves from one level to another (for example, from requires improvement to good at either quality statement or overall rating level).

Local authorities will be able to use our online portal to access their evidence category scores for each of the quality statements. They can use this information to focus on where improvements may be needed.

Factual financial information

The Department of Health and Social Care has requested that we include financial information in assessment reports. However, we do not consider this in our assessment – it is presented for information purposes only.

Assessment reports for each local authority will include financial information, such as:

  • The local authority estimated that in (year), its total budget would be £XX. Its actual spend for that year was £XX, which was £XX more than estimated.
  • The local authority estimated that it would spend £XX of its total budget on adult social care in (year). Its actual spend was £XX, which is £XX more than estimated.
  • In (year), XX% of the budget was spent on adult social care. 
  • The local authority [has/has not] raised the full adult social care precept for (year) and (year).

Note: the amount raised through adult social care precept varies from local authority to local authority.  

  • Approximately XX people were accessing long-term adult social care support, and approximately XX people were accessing short-term adult social care support in (year).

Note: Local authorities spend money on a range of adult social care services, including supporting individual people. No two care packages are the same and vary significantly in their intensity, duration, and cost.

Notifying the Secretary of State of failing performance

Our reports will make clear any areas that require improvement. We consider local authorities to be best placed to lead their own improvement. Our assessments consider any improvement actions that a local authority has already put in place.

If we find that a local authority is failing to perform its functions under the Care Act to an acceptable standard, we must inform the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care. This duty is under section 50 of The Health and Social Care Act 2008.

The duty is triggered where any quality statement receives a score of 1. This applies to all quality statements except those under the ‘Leadership’ theme. These do not directly map to Part 1 of the Care Act.

When this happens, the Chief Inspector of Adult Social Care and Integrated Care will write separately to:

  • the Secretary of State to explain how we made our decision
  • the Chief Executive and Director of Adult Social Services at the local authority to inform them that a section 50 notification has been made.

Following this notification, the Department of Health and Social Care will provide guidance and co-ordinate any improvement or intervention activity.

This is described in the Operational framework for adult social care intervention in local authorities.