CQC IPC inspections to increase over winter, with focus on visiting

CQC is set to increase Infection, Prevention and Control (IPC) inspections over the winter months, and will use these to gather information on visiting practices.

A mandatory question is now in effect which looks at how visiting is being supported to happen in a safe way.

In a statement on supporting visiting over the festive season, CQC makes clear its expectation that providers should follow government guidance on visiting. This clearly sets out that all care home residents can choose to nominate an essential care giver who may visit the home to attend to essential care needs. The essential care giver should be enabled to visit in most circumstances, including if the care home is experiencing an outbreak of COVID-19 infections. Where there is evidence that this is not happening, CQC will continue to take action.

It advises care homes “that if something changes and they are no longer able to do this then they should speak with their CQC inspector as soon as possible”.

CQC says that in total concerns have been raised in relation to 54 potential blanket bans, 19 of which have been raised in the last six months.

Of the 54 concerns raised (50 unique locations), visiting is now in line with guidance. A total of 12 locations were inspected following concerns, and action taken against two providers.

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