Assessing services we do not rate

From: Care Quality Commission
Published: Thu Apr 25 2024

As we continue to assess and rate services using our single assessment framework, our new guidance looks at how we will assess services that do not receive a rating.

Non-rated services are types of service that are exempt from CQC's legal duty to give a rating.

As with all of our changes, we are changing our approach to ensure we are a smarter regulator, but our regulations remain the same.

For these services, our approach to assessment is consistent with our approach to those that do receive a rating using our new single assessment framework.

Difference with other services

Unlike services that we rate, there is no overall score or scoring for key questions, quality statements or evidence categories, and no overall rating.

Although these services do not receive a rating, we will assess them and provide a judgement on whether they are meeting the regulations for each of our 5 key questions: safe, effective, caring, responsive and well-led.

When these assessments will start

We will start to carry out planned assessments for non-rated services on 13 May. We may contact services before that date to let them know we are coming. We may also carry out responsive assessments before that, if we have information that indicates risk.

As we begin, we will undertake a small number of assessments across unrated services to allow us to learn from our approach. Providers who are the first to be assessed will receive support to ensure the guidance is clear. During this time, feedback and lessons from our rollout will inform how we continue to use our new approach with more providers.

As with all registered services, we will regularly review how well the new assessment approach is working and will share the timescales involved by the end of June 2024.

Non-rated services include:

  • primary dental services
  • children's homes
  • sexual assault referral centres (SARCs)
  • blood and transplant services
  • hyperbaric oxygen therapy services
  • medical laboratories
  • adult prisons, youth offending institutions, immigration removal centres.

Assessment and ratings

All primary dental services, children's homes, sexual assault referral centres and services in secure settings will continue to have the same relationship with their current inspectors.

Our local teams will start to assess blood and transplant services, hyperbaric oxygen therapy services, and independent pathology laboratories.

Following assessments, instead of using our ratings, we will provide a judgement to reflect whether the quality statements assessed are compliant with the regulations mapped to them. This will be either ‘Regulations met' or ‘Not all regulations met'.

We will continue to publish a report for non-rated services. These will follow the new format and include our judgements. Read more detail on how we assess and provide judgements for non-rated services.

Company: Care Quality Commission

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