Participant experience of a Care Quality Commission inspection
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Participant experience of a Care Quality Commission inspection

Jennifer Oates Registered mental health nurse, PhD student and independent clinical member of the governing body, Brighton and Hove Clinical Commissioning Group, Brighton, England

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the regulator for health and social care in England. It sets and monitors standards of care and has legal powers to take action when those standards are not met. The CQC now regulates primary care as well as hospital, community and social care, with significant influence on nursing practice and the conduct of care. This article explains the role and function of the CQC and the circumstances in which its current model was devised. It discusses the commission’s comprehensive inspection approach, with particular reference to mental health settings. The article aims to demystify the inspection process and put it into context, drawing on the experiences of a director of nursing, an expert by experience and a nursing specialist adviser who have participated in comprehensive inspections.

Nursing Standard. 29, 48, 42-46. doi: 10.7748/ns.29.48.42.e9806


Peer review

All articles are subject to external double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software.

Conflict of interest

Array The author has acted as a specialist adviser and Mental Health Act commissioner and reviewer for the CQC. The views in this article do not necessarily reflect those of the CQC.

Received: 27 November 2014

Accepted: 13 March 2015