One of the five questions CQC now asks of all providers is ‘how well-led is this organisation?’. The quality of leadership is one of the most important determinants of the quality and safety of services.
Monitor and the Trust Development Authority also test the quality of leadership in their assessments of NHS trusts and foundation trusts.
Now, the three organisations have committed to developing an aligned framework for making judgements about how well-led NHS providers are.
For trusts, the framework means that CQC, Monitor and the TDA all have a consistent view which will form the basis of regulatory judgements on well-led.
The framework should help organisations to improve as it will give a clarity of expectation, and will allow them to benchmark themselves against a common expectation of what good looks like.
Having a joined up approach should remove unnecessary duplication and burden on NHS providers.
The intention is to put these plans into action by October 2014. Leading up to that time, the three regulators will work together and with trusts to test the approach.
Professor Sir Mike Richards, CQC’s Chief Inspector of Hospitals, said: ‘The leadership of a trust sets the tone for the organisation. It’s a vital area for all three regulators to look at, so it’s only right that we should have a shared view of what characteristics a well-led organisations displays.
‘By ‘well-led’ we mean that the leadership, management and governance of the organisation assure the delivery of high-quality care for patients, supports learning and innovation and promote an open and fair culture.’