How to fight bad inspectors

The Care Quality Commission regulates you – but who regulates the regulator? Lawyer Philippa Doyle says if you get a bad report – and they are still coming through during the lockdown – then make sure you challenge it.

It was disappointing to read in the press that the Care Quality Commission (CQC) has found that dozens of its reports are flawed. 

In January 2020, it was reported that the watchdog had been compelled to retract almost 40 inspection reports into care and nursing homes after finding that there was ‘duplicate material’ in 78 reports, where identical quotes from patients, service users or families or sections of evidence had been pasted into reports into different institutions. 

In 38 out of the 78 reports, the CQC had found that the homes in question would need to be re-inspected for it to be ‘confident in the ratings and findings’. All the homes were in the north of England except for one in London.

This is devastating news for the sector. But it does underline the importance of challenging a CQC inspection if you are a provider from any sector and feel that the due process has not been followed.

Ultimately, it is the providers who regulate the CQC. Only if providers complain, challenge or report back to the CQC can poor inspection practices be identified and addressed.

Inspection report suspended