Background Following one hospice sharing their experiences of piloting the Care Quality Commission’s (CQC) new inspection model, two hospices have been working in partnership to increase awareness and understanding about what CQC inspections entail, to better prepare hospices for an inspection. Their discussions led to the decision that undertaking peer reviews could be beneficial.
Aim To develop and undertake a peer review of another hospice’s services to increase staff awareness and understanding about what CQC inspections entail and add value to their practices.
Methods To ensure the visit generated useful information it followed the style of a real life inspection and considered the five key lines of enquiry.
The visiting team undertook a review of available information on the hospice and developed structured question sets.
An unannounced visit was undertaken to test all hospice procedures and gain an overview of standards. The team held discussions with executives, managers, staff, volunteers, patients, carers and relatives, observed practices both on site and out in the community, and assessed documentation.
A report summarising the findings and suggestions for improvements was also produced.
Results Both hospices felt the experience was extremely valuable and rewarding and it increased staff understanding and awareness of what CQC inspections entail to ensure better preparation about what to expect.
The visit highlighted areas not currently on the hospice’s radar and provided the opportunity to implement changes before an inspection. It also enabled the hospices to share experiences, good practices, tools and documents.
Interpretation/conclusions Mock peer review visits are a positive opportunity to describe and demonstrate staff and hospice strengths and development plans, and implementing a regional peer review programme would better prepare hospices for CQC inspections, enable identification of potential issues and encourage sharing of working practices that could improve both safety and effectiveness of end-of-life care.
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