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Health regulators are not fit for purpose, says new report

The UK’s health regulators are currently unfit for purpose and need to be urgently reformed so they better support healthcare professionals providing services, a new report has claimed.

According to the report, Rethinking Regulation, published by the Professional Standards Authority, the UK’s current regulators – including the CQC – are too expensive to fund, and are over-complicated.

The report also claims that it is not clear as to whether regulators have improved the quality of care for patients, and questions if the benefit of this approach outweighs the ‘very considerable cost’ to carry the regulatory process.

The chief executive of the Professional Standards Authority, Harry Cayton, said: ‘Piecemeal adjustments to health and care regulation have, over time, made the system cumbersome, ineffective and expensive. Every part of our health and care system is changing in order to meet future needs. If patients are to benefit, regulation must undergo radical change too.

‘Regulation is asked to do too much - and to do things it should not do. We need to understand that we cannot regulate risk out of healthcare and to use regulation only where we have evidence that it actually works. Ironically, the regulations that are meant to protect patients and service users are distracting professionals from this very task.’

Earlier in the year, a Pulse investigation revealed how GP practices could see their CQC fees double as the Government seeks to phase out its funding of the regulator.

Readers' comments (14)

  • Sense at last!
    Shame no one will listen!

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  • They have all been busy creating empires for themselves

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  • when is someone going to listen !

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  • I was talking to a local practice manager who had CQC recently - it took from 8am till 7:10pm and not allowed to have a break till 4pm!

    Not only is it abuse of her human and employee rights but this will definitely affect patient care. I suggested they complain but too scared to do so for the fear of repraisals.

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  • how much did this report cost? I could have told them this for free!

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  • Regulating should be through a judicial system (the civil courts).
    But the "adversarial" UK legal system is a total shambles, worse than the GMC and CQC combined.
    First fix that which is broken (change to an inquisitorial legal system) and then there will be no need for the GMC (and the doctor holocaust will stop) and the CQC (and a childish punitive mess will be eliminated).

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  • We had our CQC inspection on 5th Feb 2015, we are still waiting for our report... Who regulates the regulators??

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  • Does CQC have to publish this report on its website?

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  • The solution is to commission better and stop buying poor service. Need more than one regulator to cross reference and prevent complacency but they need to be accountable and not just finger point. Health is imprecise and regulation won't prevent every mistake. We have a knee jerk reaction to close the door after the horse examples Shipman Mid Staffs etc but never learn how to implement the learning at pace and scale.

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  • Regulator regulating regulator. So British.

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