State of Care: CQC annual assessment of health and social care in England

24 October 2017
Image: CQC logoMost people are receiving good, safe care, and many services previously rated as inadequate were found to have made the necessary changes and improved, say CQC in their annual State of Care report.
The report shows key findings from the CQC comprehensive inspection and assessment of health and adult social care services across England. It gives a picture of the current quality of service provision, highlights examples of good practice, and identifies some of the factors that contribute to exemplary care.
Despite the fact that ‘health and care services are at full stretch’, CQC applauds the hard work of staff and leaders in maintaining quality in the ‘toughest climate’. However, they also make the point that there is a limit to staff resilience, and that this must be supported in order to face further pressures.
One challenge is likely to be an increase in the number of people with complex, chronic or multiple conditions. This, alongside an ageing population, means that the number of years people can expect to live in poorer health continues to rise, and that there will be increasingly complex demands on the system.  
CQC also found that although quality of care has improved as a whole, there is still inconsistency between services, and some have deteriorated. Overall, 19% of adult social care, 6% of GP practices, 37% of NHS acute core services, and 24% of NHS mental health core services were rated as requires improvement.
Factors that were common to better care included values-led leadership and person-centred care where multiple providers work together to provide a service built around the needs of the individual, rather than the targets of services. The report also flagged the importance of providers considering and reflecting the experiences of the people they support, if they are to deliver good, safe and sustainable care.

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