Is your home-grown approach to surveys truly compliant with CQC?

A Care organisation's entire business can live or die by its CQC inspection, which is why there is so much focus and effort put into ensuring that you're compliant with their regulations. But with 28 'outcomes' to consider, it's not surprising that some areas take a back seat to others. However in the eyes of CQC, all outcomes cover key care safety and quality regulations, so all need to be considered and adhered to. 

Outcome 16 is one of those that might get slightly overlooked in terms of a thorough approach. It is concerned with assessing and monitoring the quality of service provision, in essence, setting up appropriate feedback mechanisms to monitor services. In our years of working with Care Organisations we're always surprised by the informal methods and last-minute approaches some organisations take to tick this box. Below is a list of the key elements of outcome 16, and how Care2Improve methods can significantly improve your approach to compliance.

1. "Ensure feedback is gained from service users" - this can often be a tricky aspect when working with older service users, who might not even understand the question. Care2Improve's survey style can be adapted to different respondents, so in the case of vulnerable service users, a smiley face picture method is used. Care2Improve can also offer face to face or telephone surveying

2. "Ensure feedback is gained from those acting on behalf of service users" - this implies the family or guardians of the service user. To do this can require quite a substantial amount of work in terms of organisation - posting or emailing them the questions, encouraging response, and then compilation of answers and the all important analysis. Do care organisations really have the capacity for this time-intensive task? Care2Improve manages all this for a care organisation, from output to response to collation - the whole task is carried out systematically and robustly.

3. "Ensure feedback is gained from those employed to carry out the regulated activity". This refers to staff. Immediately you face a problem of biased results, even if responses are anonymous. If staff are not given an  independent source of feedback, you may never get a chance to really understand what's going on with your business, until perhaps CQC arrive. As we are an independent organisation to yours, we're in a position to help you gain a true perspective of your business, and help understand any underlying problems that might have not been voiced before.

4. "Demonstrate that the registered person is  able to identify, assess and manage all risks". A Care2Improve survey can show the registered person just that. The survey covers all 5 CQC assessment domains so it demonstrates a thorough approach. It's also easy to read and analyse, so in one simple document you're able to demonstrate to CQC that you're on top of assessment.

5. "Identify areas of improvement, and demonstrate a positive improvement on those areas". This is where a home-grown approach can really become unstuck. If CQC identify improvement areas, you need to produce evidence of any improvements you've made. Our surveys are repeatable with exactly the same questions asked, so it offers a very accurate representation of change. If your survey questions didn't perhaps cover the exact area of concern, or is worded slightly differently the next time, it's questionable whether change is really occurred, putting all your efforts of improvement at risk.

6. "Where necessary, send CQC written evidence of compliance and improvement plans". Ask yourself, are your survey responses all written up and filed? Are the results analysed and easy to understand? Are your improvement plans directly aligned with your survey outcomes? If not, then if a moment comes where CQC asks you for written evidence of compliance and improvement plans, you may be finding yourself facing late nights of scrabbling around and hours using Excel. With Care2Improve, the results are delivered in an easy-to-understand, clear and concise manner, completely aligned with CQCs 5 assessment areas, leaving you to just work out your improvement plans against each score.

Care2Improve independent stakeholder surveys are not only a great method of outcome 16 compliance, but a tool for management and business improvements that could elevate your care services and make you a stand-out organisation in your community. 

Start your survey today - from only £440.