Health inspectors sent into chaotic councils to fix social care crisis
Reported in The Telegraph (3 July 2017): Care Quality Commission inspectors are to be sent into chaotic councils for the first time in a bid to improve faltering social care services. The health watchdog will target town halls which are failing to provide enough care home spaces and community services as part of an effort to slash bed blocking in NHS hospitals.
The move, announced by Jeremy Hunt in Parliament last night, will be accompanied by the threat of financial sanctions for local authorities which fail to improve. Until now, the CQC, whose main task is monitoring standards in the NHS, has had the power to inspect individual care homes and social care providers. But under the new measures, inspectors will have the right to scrutinise councils themselves in an effort to tackle one of the root causes of so-called delayed transfers of care.
Reports of poor practice will be made publicly available.
The Department of Health has drawn up a list of 12 local areas where inspections will take place within a month, which include Birmingham, Manchester, Oxfordshire and Plymouth.