Following legislative changes and the introduction of our new inspection regime for health and adult social care services in England, we have updated our information on how we work with our partners to make sure people are protected from abuse, neglect and maltreatment.
We are clear that any organisation or person who comes into contact with a child or adult at risk of abuse or neglect has a responsibility and a role to play to keep them safe – it cannot by achieved by a single agency and so we want to be confident that the right action is taken by the right people at the right time.
Setting out our role and responsibilities
As we continue our work with our partners to look more closely at issues of safeguarding, we have published a statement, which sets out our role and responsibilities for safeguarding and how we carry them out.
Specifically, we have written this statement following the introduction of the Care Act 2014, which for the first time provides a legal framework for safeguarding adults.
Also, the statement reflects our new inspection regime, which we rolled out for services last year. Our new approach involves expert inspection teams who assess and then, in most cases, rate services based on what matters most to people who use services: are they safe, caring, effective, responsive to their needs, and well-led?
The fundamental standards
The approach is underpinned by new regulations that providers of health and adult social care have to follow, called the fundamental standards, which set out what everyone has a right to expect and below which care must never fall. They include a specific regulation on safeguarding people from abuse and improper treatment, which providers have to guarantee and that we inspect against on our visits.
Our statement reflects these developments and we will update it as this work on safeguarding with our partners, providers, the public and our staff progresses.
Sally Warren, Deputy Chief Inspector for Adult Social Care and lead on safeguarding at the Care Quality Commission said: "Safeguarding is everyone's business and CQC has an important role to play alongside our partners. People who use services are at the heart of everything we do.
"Our new safeguarding statement provides a timely update about our roles and responsibilities. It underlines the importance of playing our part effectively, keeping people who use services are at the heart of our work, and acting promptly and appropriately to help keep them safe."