CQC: PCTs and councils to face common assessment from 2010

Primary care trusts and councils should face a common assessment of their commissioning function for health and adult care from 2010-11 onwards, the Care Quality Commission has said.

The new combined health and social care regulator made the proposal in a consultation on the performance assessment of councils, PCTs and providers from 2009-10 onwards, published yesterday.

While PCTs and councils would have separate commissioning assessments in 2008-9 and 2009-10, the CQC proposed producing a joint “performance profile” for 2009-10, assessing how well trusts and local authorities collectively served their local populations.

This would be based on a new common assessment framework, which the CQC said should be based on performance against the following measures:- safe care, a good experience for people, improving outcomes, focusing on healthy, independent living and quality of life, access to services and value for money.

Gradings for adult social care

The CQC also said confirmed councils would be graded on their performance in adult social care in 2008-9 and 2009-10, though did not specify the nature of the rating.

This year saw the final adult social care star ratings, ahead of the introduction next year of the comprehensive area assessment, an overarching performance management framework for councils and their partners, absorbing all existing frameworks. 

However, CQC said that while its annual rating of councils’ adult care functions would feed into the CAA, it would also be published separately.

State of health and adult social care report

The commission also revealed that it intended to publish an annual state of health and adult social care report, which would replace the Commission for Social Care Inspection’s state of social care report and the equivalent annual study by the Healthcare Commission.

It also proposed to introduce an annual report on the operation of the Mental Health Act and the welfare of detained patients, either as a separate publication or as part of the state of health and adult social care report. The Mental Health Act Commission currently publishes these reports every two years.

The consultation also included a number of proposed topics for special reviews, including:-

  • The healthcare needs of care home residents.
  • The physical health needs of people with mental health problems and learning disabilities.
  • Care pathways for people with a stroke or dementia.
  • Equality and human rights in health and adult social care.
  • Councils’ response to people’s first contact with them in adult social care.
  • Disabled children and their families.
  • Child and adolescent mental health services.

Performance indicator on learning disabilities

The commission also said that it would introduce a new performance indicator for NHS trusts (except ambulance trusts) on the collection of data and information necessary to allow people with a learning disability to be identified, and arrangements for involving them and their carers in the development of services.

This was in response to the government-commissioned independent review of healthcare for people with learning disabilities, which found the NHS was failing to treat the group equally, including because of insufficient data on their needs

Related articles

Comprehensive area assessment set to replace star ratings

Significance of adult star ratings questioned as councils improve

Expert guide to inspection and regulation


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