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  What is the CQC?
The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of health and social care in England. Our approach includes our use of Intelligent Monitoring to decide when, where and what to inspect, methods for listening better to people’s experiences of care, and using the best information across the system. We monitor, inspect and regulate services to make sure they meet standards of quality and safety. We always publish what we find and include quality ratings to help people choose their care service.
Nationally there are around 40,000 adult social care services registered with CQC of which 238 care home and home care services are located in the Oxford area.
As well as inspecting Adult Social Care we have staff working in other directorates who inspect NHS and independent hospitals and clinics, GPs, out of hours services and dentists.
What is the role
of the Adult Social Care inspection teams?
In our Adult Social Care inspection teams we have an Inspection Manager and inspectors who have health and/or social care backgrounds. The team’s role is to inspect and monitor the services in their area to ensure that people receive safe, high quality and compassionate care and encourage services to improve.
The inspectors often lead an inspection team that may include specialist professional advisors and experts by experience (people with personal experience of the type of services being inspected). The team seek to answer
five key questions.
What are the Five Key questions?
To get to the heart of people’s experiences of care, the focus of our inspections is on the quality and safety of services, based on the things that matter to people. We always ask the following five questions of services:­
• Are they safe? • Are they effective? • Are they caring?
• Are they responsive to people’s needs? • Are they well­led?
For all health and social care services, we have defined these five key questions as follows:
In the first of a series of articles Sue Burn, Head of Inspection ­ South Central Area provides an insight into the role of the CQC...
Sue comments:
‘We want to identify the best care and practice as well as encouraging improvement and preventing poor care. Like care providers and their staff we want to make sure that people consistently receive the high quality care they rightly deserve.’
  CQC’s Overall Operating Model
By safe, we mean that people are protected from abuse and avoidable harm.
By effective, we mean that people’s care, treatment and support achieves good outcomes, promotes a good quality of life and is evidence­based where possible.
By caring, we mean that staff involve and treat people with compassion, kindness, dignity and respect.
By responsive, we mean that services are organised so that they meet people’s needs.
By well­led we mean that the leadership, management and governance of the organisation assures the delivery of high­ quality person­centred care, supports learning and innovation, and promotes an open and fair culture.

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