The Care Quality Commission is the independent regulator of health and social care in England. The CQC ensures care providers meet essential standards of quality and safety by a system of continuous monitoring of compliance.
The CQC has legal powers to inspect and if necessary warn, fine or even close down providers if their services drop below essential standards. The CQC also carries out special reviews of care pathways and undertakes investigations where there are concerns about quality.
The CQC will work with Monitor to accredit healthcare providers under the NHS reforms.