CQC Publishes New Guidance on Factual Accuracy Checking

This month has seen the publication of new guidance from the CQC, on the process for providers to follow in order to request a review of their rating following an inspection. The Factual Accuracy Guidance has been updated to ensure that it is clearer and more user friendly. It includes amendments to clarify the type of comments that can be submitted and a requirement for providers to submit additional information in support of any alleged inaccuracy.

The guidance has also been clarified to show how the CQC considers and responds to provider comments, explaining that the CQC will seek further information from any provider suggesting that there is an inaccuracy, who have not already submitted such information. In these cases, the CQC may consider whether information could be obtained from other sources.

Read on to learn more about this updated guidance and be ready to ensure the best possible outcome following your next inspection.

The arrival of your draft report following an inspection sets the clock ticking for the completion of your factual accuracy check. This important process is your opportunity to challenge any information within your report that you believe to be inaccurate and potentially improve your overall rating but you only have 10 days to submit your request to the CQC.

4 Steps to Ensure Your Factual Accuracy Check Gets the Best Results

      1. Understand the Process: The factual accuracy process allows you to raise concerns about the accuracy and completeness of the information contained in your report, so ensure that any submission that you make is focussed on these aspects only. It is not a complaints process and any complaints must be dealt with via a separate complaints procedure.
      2. Know what to Submit: CQC allows 3 categories of comments to be submitted at the factual accuracy stage:
        • Category A: Typographical or numerical errors.
        • Category B: Information that the provider considers to be factually incorrect.
        • Category C: Additional information that addresses an issue not discussed in the draft report which the provider considers should be included or which the provider believes may have an impact on the judgement.

    For categories B and C, it is essential that you provide supporting information as evidence of your claim.

    1. Be Specific: Any comments made in your response must detail the exact wording that you wish to challenge so that the inspector is clear on the nature of the issue being raised. Where supporting documents are submitted, you must specify exactly which wording is relevant to your challenge and where in the documents this can be found.
    2. Use the Right Format: CQC includes a factual accuracy form along with the covering letter accompanying each draft report. and requests that this form is used for any submission. Using any other format may result in a delayed response.

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