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CQC reviews underway in two NHS systems

CQC reviews underway in two NHS systems
By Jess Hacker
19 October 2023

Two integrated care systems (ICSs) are currently under review by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) as part of a pilot assessment of the new NHS structures.

The two pilot assessments will see the CQC test its approach to reviewing whole systems going forward, with Birmingham and Solihull ICS and Dorset ICS each asked to hand over information for review.

Both pilots will assess how leadership works, whether systems are integrated, progress on reducing inequalities, and how safety is managed across local services.

Learnings from the pilot will be incorporated into formal assessments beginning in 2024.

The assessments will be carried out by specialist advisors and executive reviewers representing various health and care sectors, and will also feature interviews with staff and patients, the CQC said.

They will also see the CQC test how it works with partners and stakeholders – including NHS England – how it uses feedback from providers, and how it enables efficient ways of working.

The CQC said a report of its findings will be published but that the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) agreed ratings will not be published in this instance.

In March, the CQC published its interim guidance for assessing ICSs, setting out that systems would receive ‘outstanding’ or ‘requires improvement’ ratings.

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