Care gap needs to be bridged1st April 2009
The head of England’s new Care Quality Commission has said that the gap between health and social care must be bridged.
Cynthia Bower, who is chief executive of the new regulatory body, acknowledged there were areas for improvement such as in hospital discharge arrangements.
Ms Bower revealed that the CQC would aim to quickly drive up standards, taking an early look at healthcare available to care home residents with a comprehensive review.
She said that with an ageing population, more people would need access to care that spanned across both social services and the NHS.
"I think having a regulator that covers both will focus the minds on the issue, but we will be following this up with assessments and audits which will look at how the two are working together," said Ms Bower.
The initial review will look at standards across the public and private sector amid concerns that care home residents do not get sufficient access to dentists, GPs, nurses and dementia specialists.
Michelle Mitchell, director of the merged Age Concern and Help the Aged charity, welcomed the move.
She said: “Too many older people and their families continue to be horribly let down by health and care services.
"The quality of care they experience is all too often not up to scratch, so it's encouraging that this is one of the new commission's first reviews."
National Voices, which represents people with long-term conditions, said it hoped the new joint regulator would help join up services provided by social care and the NHS.
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Title: Care gap needs to be bridged
Author: Mark Nicholls
Article Id: 10803
Date Added: 1st Apr 2009