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The effective CQC standard and how to achieve an improved rating

04 May 2022


  • CQC

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) ‘Effective’ Key Line of Enquiry (KLOE) is in place to measure how effective a healthcare organisation’s care is and how this contributes to helping improve the lives of their service users and patients.

KLOEs are the guidelines used by the CQC to assess services and award a quality rating. These ratings are given based on whether healthcare organisations perform against five main questions, one being: “Is your care effective?

However, some healthcare organisations may struggle to achieve their desired rating due to a range of reasons and challenges. This blog acts as a guide to help healthcare services gain a better understanding of what is meant by the effective CQC KLOE, the service requirements, common  challenges faced, and how advanced technology can help healthcare services achieve an improved rating and deliver more effective care.

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What is meant by effective care?

The CQC defines it as:

“By effective, we mean that people’s care, treatment and support achieves good outcomes, promotes a good quality of life and is based on the best available evidence.”

Requirements of healthcare organisations

The CQC expect healthcare services to evidence effective care and use guidance to ensure that they are delivering the highest quality of care and meeting patients’ needs. It examines how well organisations are actively caring and protecting both customers and workers. The CQC effective KLOE is segmented into several areas:

E1) Healthcare organisations need to take measures to guarantee that they are assessing people’s physical health, mental health, and social needs regularly and fairly. This needs to be done in a safe and secure manner to ensure that any care, treatment, and support is delivered in line with current legislation.

E2) All staff must be equipped with the right experience, skills, and knowledge to deliver and support effective care and treatment. Organisations must make sure that all their workers’ learning needs are understood, met, and assessed. Staff need to undergo relevant training to be able to provide the best possible service to their patients and support them within their role.

E3) Patient care and treatment outcomes must be routinely monitored and compared with similar services to be able to assess the effectiveness of those outcomes, spot trends, and understand where improvements could be made.

E4) Services need to communicate and work cohesively with staff, teams, services, and other organisations to be able to deliver effective care and treatment. This could include liaising with other healthcare teams or social care services.

E5) Organisations must able to evidence that they are working towards improving both workers’ and patients’ lives and promoting healthy lifestyles. This area of the CQC effective KLOE assesses how your service supports and encourages patients to monitor their own health and understand their treatment options.

E6) Is consent to care and treatment always sought in line with legislation and guidance? Where possible, healthcare services must be able to evidence patient content at all stages of caregiving; during assessment, planning, intervention, and treatment.

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Common roadblocks that organisations encounter when demonstrating and delivering effective care

Consistency in care delivery

All healthcare workers and organisations have a duty of care and try their utmost to ensure that their service is delivered effectively. However, as people within the care industry will already know, there are many obstacles that occur daily which have a direct impact on the quality of care provided. For instance, a shortage of staff means fewer resources, which can result in rushing patients’ mealtimes, increased risks of errors when inputting and evidencing data, and jobs left unfinished due to a lack of time.

Care does not always meet the current evidence-based guidance

The CQC and other regulating bodies provide healthcare services with guidelines that they are asked to meet in order to correctly fulfil the needs and interests of their patients and workers. It is common in healthcare organisations to work from a series of spreadsheets. The problem with this is that evidencing actions, incidents, events, improvements, appraisals, training, and so on can be difficult because the documents are not stored in one central location. Care providers and homes may be deducted marks during inspections due to a lack of sufficient evidence.

Staff training and additional support is lacking

A common challenge that a lot of healthcare services experience is that staff are unclear on how to effectively fulfil their role as a carer, due to an insufficient amount of training and support. This can lead to staff becoming unclear on current legislation around caring for people.

The most important thing for us as a business is that we are providing the best care possible to our residents. By simplifying our systems stack and streamlining our business processes with Radar Healthcare, we’ve been able to save our operations team valuable time that they can now spend caring for our residents, rather than completing documentation.

Craig Rainford, Operations Systems Manager at Four Seasons Health Care Group

How does Radar Healthcare support effective care?

Radar Healthcare’s software supports healthcare organisations to deliver effective care, and support them to prepare for CQC inspections, and provide sufficient evidence to achieve a good or outstanding rating.

Let’s take a look in more detail at some of the ways that we help organisations accomplish effective care:

Evidencing effective care

The CQC inspectors are looking for evidence of effective care. Radar Healthcare’s quality and compliance software supports healthcare organisations to do this in a range of ways: auditing, incident and event management, risk management, business compliance, and document management modules, all centralised in one system.

In addition, we have found that gathering positive feedback, such as compliments, boosts staff morale by recognising the measurable impact of their care. Moreover, CQC inspectors regard positive feedback and employee appraisal as a form of evidencing effective care.

Our evolution of health and safety and quality wouldn’t have happened without Radar Healthcare. We haven’t grown our team, yet we’re doing about 60% more than we’ve ever done before thanks to the software.

Misha Fontenot, Quality and Policy Manager at Walsingham Support

Encourages continuous improvement

It is critical to be able to show a proactive approach to effective care. Our action plans act to allocate, plan, and review steps of improvement to methods, performance, and strategies. You are also able to connect action plan items with audits and incidents, bridging everything together for better communication, reduction of workload, and avoiding duplication – whilst supporting a consistently high quality of care.

Workforce compliance

Our workforce compliance module helps ensure that services are able to monitor and keep up-to-date with the progress of their employees’ training and appraisals. We have designed the module to be entirely customisable and allow service users complete visibility of everything that has been completed.

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