GP services for older people: a guide for care home managers
Workforce development, standards and regulation - Requirements of the regulator
Managers and owners should be aware, and inform their staff, of the Care Quality Commission's (CQC) requirements on care home providers. This applies in relation to the health care of residents and requirements of NHS England and the CQC on GPs in relation to the care of older people.
CQC's regulatory standards
The CQC is the national body that regulates health and social care services. In adult social care, it registers services, managers and proprietors, conducts inspections, and publishes reports on how well services meet its standards. Some of its standards, such as respect for people's dignity and privacy, are common across different kinds of services, from small home care agencies to teaching hospitals. Others relate to one particular type of service, such as a care home. CQC standards are one benchmark of good practice.
CQC's standards for residents of care and nursing homes are summarised, with examples, below.
- You should expect to be respected, involved in your care and support, and told what's happening at every stage – for example, you will be involved in discussions about your care, treatment and support. You will get support to help you make decisions and staff will respect your privacy and dignity.
- You should expect care, treatment and support that meets your needs – for instance, you can expect your care home to meet your needs relating to your cultural background, language, gender, disability, age, sexuality, religion or beliefs.
- You should expect to be safe – you will be protected from abuse or the risk of abuse and staff will respect your human rights.
- You should expect to be cared for by staff with the right skills to do their jobs properly – for example, there will always be enough members of staff available to keep you safe and meet your needs.
- You should expect your care provider to routinely check the quality of their services – for instance, your personal records, including medical records, will be accurate and kept safe and confidential.
Findings from the CQC's 2012 report 'Health care in care homes' 
The following were found to promote a culture of putting patients' needs first:
- Staff clearly understood the preferences and needs of their residents.
- Care home providers made sure the ways staff talked to and cared for people were respectful and appropriate.
- Staff saw residents as individuals and supported them to live as independently as possible.
- Care home providers made sure that interactions between staff and residents were just as important as providing practical care needs.
- Homes that recorded people's choices and decisions about their care were more likely to be involving people (91 per cent) than those that had not (41 per cent).
- Additionally, homes that had recorded people's individual food and drink preferences were more likely to be giving people a choice of food and drink (88 per cent) than those that had not (41 per cent).
Homes caring for people with dementia, including those with a dedicated dementia unit, were less likely to respect people's dignity and protect them from abuse. This may be because some of the staff did not have the appropriate skills, knowledge and experience in the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards and the Mental Capacity Act 2005.
All SCIE resources are free to download, however to access the following downloads you will need a free MySCIE account:
- Evidence review on partnership working between GPs, care home residents and care homes
- GP services for older people: a guide for care home managers
- Improving access to and experience of GP services for older people living in care homes: practice survey