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1 About us What we do and how we do it Original document title: About us. What we do and how we do it EasyRead

2

3 What is in this guide page Who are we? 1 1. What we do 2 2. How do we check services? 4 3. What do we do when services are not good enough? 6 4. Keeping people safe and working together 8 5. Checking services under the Mental Health Act 10

4 What is in this guide page 6. Involving people who use services Making complaints Keeping people up to date 14 I feel safe 9. The Government s rules about how good a service needs to be and how we should keep people safe How to get in touch with us 19

5 Who are we? We are the Care Quality Commission, also called the CQC for short. This is an EasyRead guide about how we check Health and Social Care Services in England to make sure they are good enough. We are independent, this means we are not a Part of Government so we can speak up for people who use services. This guide has 10 Parts telling you about who we are, how we do our work and how to get in touch with us. 1

6 1. What we do We check that people get good, safe health and social care and it meets the rules set by Government. This includes: hospitals dentists ambulances care homes home care, services that support people in their own homes. 2

7 We also look after the rights of people who need extra support to stay safe. This includes people who are being made to have treatment under the Mental Health Act (see Part 5). We think it is most important to listen to what people think about their care, making sure people are healthy and well. If services are not good enough we can do several things to make them better (see Part 3). 3

8 Register 2. How do we check services? Services have to ask to be on one of our lists if they want to work. Being on our list means we check them to make sure they are good enough. We check services by: visiting often visiting when there have been worries about a service not telling services when we are visiting checking how good the service has been for people. 4

9 I feel safe We work with local groups and others on keeping people safe. We visit services where people are being made to have treatment under the Mental Health Act to make sure people still have their rights (see Part 5). We tell people how well services are doing by putting information about them onto our website. 5

10 3. What do we do when services are not good enough? I feel safe Services have to meet the rules set by Government. These are called Standards (see Part 9 for more details). Plan If services are not good enough we can do these things to make them better. We can: tell care managers to quickly make a plan about how they will get better give a service a letter warning them with a date when they have to get better by say a service cannot do certain jobs or give a certain service say a service cannot have new people using it 6

11 give a service a fixed penalty, this is a fine they have to pay from 300 to 4,000 Register take a service off our lists for a while Register take a service off our lists for ever take a service to court. We work with the local councils, other people who check services and sometimes the police to make sure these things are done. 7

12 4. Keeping people safe and working together When we find out people might be unsafe we tell others so we can all act quickly. We work closely together with: Monitor, the organisation that checks NHS services that are set up as Foundation Trusts Foundation Trust Network, this group speaks up for NHS Foundation Trusts Foundation Trust Governors Association, this group helps the people running Trusts to do a better job. We often talk with other organisations and listen to any worries they have. This includes 150 LINks (Local Involvement Networks, changing soon to Local HealthWatch). 8

13 We work with local councils listening to any worries about people who might be being abused and we do something about it when we need to. We also check some services with other people, these are: services for children - with Ofsted (who check children s services) services for young people who have broken the law - with HMI Probation healthcare in prisons - with HMI prisons. 9

14 5. Checking services under the Mental Health Act Our inspectors make sure people who are being made to have treatment under the Mental Health Act have their rights and a good service. These inspectors are called Mental Health Commissioners. They check: the rules under this law are being used properly people are being well looked after. We visit patients being kept in hospitals and meet them alone so they can tell us what they think about their service. We also meet patients who are living in the community and being made to have treatment. 10

15 6. Involving people who use services The people who use services tell us important things about care services and when someone is unsafe. You can tell us what you think about services too. See Part 10 for how to get in touch. Or tell your local support group about it. We work with local groups and big organisations to make sure we hear from lots of people using services. We also do our checking with people who have used services or who care for someone who uses care services. We call these people Experts by Experience. They also have a say in the reports we write. 11

16 7. Making complaints We said in Part 6 that we want people who use services to tell us important things about care services or when someone is unsafe. But please remember, we do not sort out complaints ourselves. If you have a complaint please do these things: 1. Tell the manager of the service. Every service has to have a good way to sort out complaints. 2. If you are complaining about an NHS health service and you are still not happy then you can tell the Health and Parliamentary Ombudsman. 12

17 3. If you are complaining about a care home or home care service and you are still not happy, talk to your social services if they help pay for the service, or tell the Local Government Ombudsman. There is more information and an EasyRead booklet about complaints on our website. How to Complain about a Health or Social Care Service. 13

18 8. Keeping people up to date Register On our website you can find information about: whether a service is on one of our lists saying they can work in that area ü all the services we check and if they meet the Government s rules any services we have asked to get better what we have done to make sure services change or stop what they are doing how to easily tell us about a service by clicking a box. 14

19 9. The Government s rules about how good a service needs to be and how we should keep people safe I feel safe There are 16 rules about how good a service is and keeping people safe. These are the 5 main things people can expect: 1. You should be involved in your care or treatment. This means you should be told what s happening all the time. You should be asked if you want something or not. And staff should treat you properly with respect. 15

20 2. To have care treatment and support that meets your needs. You should have a plan that is right for you and have things like the food and drink you want and need. I feel safe 3. To be safe. Your service should keep you safe and stop anyone from hurting you. Your medicines should be given to you and looked after properly. Everything should be clean. 16

21 4. To have staff who know how to their job properly. 5. A service that checks they are doing a good job. Your service should check it meets the Government s rules. They should listen to anything you have to say and do something about any complaints you make. They should keep your notes private and safe. 17

22 The full list of Government rules for different services is on our website. These include the rules for: hospitals care homes care in your own home dentists. As well as how to complain about a service and how to complain about the CQC. 18

23 10. How to get in touch with us Phone: Website: Post: Care Quality Commission Citygate Gallowgate Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 4PA Tell us if you would like this booklet in another language or in large print, Braille or on CD. 19

24 Credits This paper has been designed and produced for the Care Quality Commission by the EasyRead service at Inspired Services Publishing Ltd. Ref ISL365/11. February Artwork is from the Valuing People Clipart collection and cannot be used anywhere else without written permission from Inspired Services Publishing Ltd. To contact Inspired Services: 20

25 Where we are The Care Quality Commission's head office is at Finsbury Tower Bunhill Row London EC1Y 8TG How to contact us Phone: (calls charged at normal rates) Please contact us if you would like a summary of this publication in other formats or languages. This publication is printed on paper made from a minimum of 75% recycled fibre. 21

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