published on
March 11, 2022

How To Fix An Inadequate/Requires Improvement CQC Rating

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Care Home

In January 2018, consumer watchdog Which? examined 1,917 care homes and found 24% required improvement or were rated inadequate.

What Happens When You Get an Inadequate CQC Rating?

Depending on your held rating, The Care Quality Commission inspects a care home every 1- 5 years. When a care home receives an inadequate CQC rating from its inspection, special measures are introduced by the CQC - though they can sometimes take urgent enforcement action if appropriate.

Following an inadequate rating, there is a turnaround period. Inspectors will return again in 6 months expecting to see improvements.

If improvements are not made, there will be another 6 month period for improvement however, the Care Quality Commission will take steps to prevent the service from operating, such as initiating an embargo (making it impossible to receive new service users and residents).

Over this secondary 6 month period, if improvements are still not made, the Care Quality Commission may move to close down the service.

Remember, the CQC is always on the side of the service users and residents and though they aren’t actively looking to close a service down, drastic action can be taken in serious cases.

The CQC inspection is there to ensure that residents are being looked after properly, to acceptable standards and that the business is being run in the correct manner.

What is involved in a CQC inspection

There are 5 key criteria that your service with be assessed on during the CQC inspection:


Ensure that your service users, residents and staff are safe and protected from harm and abuse.


Ticking boxes is not enough, you must ensure that actions are carried out such that the level of care, treatment and support offered is to a high level.


Ensure staff treat those in their care with respect, dignity and compassion.


Not every resident is the same. You must ensure that your service is responsive to varying needs. Care should be based on the individual rather than an average example.


Leadership is crucial to the whole operation and it takes more than managing staff. You need to ensure that the organisation promotes an open and fair culture encouraging learning and innovation within its staff.

Tips to pass a CQC inspection

Empower Staff

Frontline staff can sometimes be anxious about an inspection… but they shouldn’t be! Empower staff to see it as an opportunity to show what you are achieving day-to-day and a chance to receive helpful advice to make the way they work the best that it can be.

Mock Inspections

Did you know you can organise mock inspections based on a real CQC inspection? This can help you flag areas that need improvement before the inspectors do!

Check out the three providers below:


Quality, Management and Development Services

GR Care Consultancy

Think About Technology

Technology doesn’t have to mean expensive and complicated!The CQC looks approvingly on organisations displaying innovation and learning in its activities. So, improve the effectiveness of your service by being proactive in your approach.

A platform like Florence has a huge range of benefits, one of those includes cutting your staffing costs whilst also giving you increased support when it comes to needing to pass an inspection:

The digitised nature of the Florence platform streamlines your processes

Suddenly, rather than dealing with paper folders that hold limited information, you’ve got fully detailed profiles and printable files at the click of a button.

Think training documents, and a digital footprint of every nurse that’s ever worked with you!

Document Transparency and Control

Having 24/7 access to a detailed profile of each nurse that works with you includes a nurses documentation and training. You can feel assured that the nurses you choose to work in your home are fully compliant, with all relevant documentation available to view.

One of the biggest risks in a CQC inspection is poor staff.

The inspectors look carefully at staffing. Are you fully staffed, have you got good continuity of staff and good recruitment methods?

Heavy use of agency staff can mean staff members who are less reliable and accountable, meaning the overall quality of care can slip. Hence inspectors are known to take note of the reliance an organisation places in agency staff.

Florence actually solves all of those issues:

We're not an agency. When a nurse works a shift through Florence they are working directly for you, similar to NHS Staff Bank.

Increased continuity and quality of staff.

Not only are Florence nurses known to be more engaged with their shifts, but there is also greater continuity of care through having direct relationships and flexibility.

The nurses using Florence receive a fairer, transparent and more flexible service over their agencies, that gives them greater autonomy. Florence enables an organisation to pick between the nurses that apply for their shift and also features two-way chat between both parties, even before a nurse has worked their first shift there.

Increased accountability.

The smart rating system enables an organisation to rate a nurse in a range of areas from 1 - 5 after every shift. Nurses are aware of how impactful their overall rating is on their future work prospects on the platform, increasing accountability and performance during and after their shifts.

No Finder's fee.

Many organisations have found permanent staff through Florence, using it flexibly as and when they need to, you could see it as a form of free recruitment of high-quality staff members.

If You Are Rated Inadequate or Requires Improvement

Getting an outstanding rating is a huge achievement that only 1 in 200 organisations receive. That’s not a very high percentage, why shouldn’t it be more. If you get an inadequate or requires improvement rating, it is not the end of the world. Take it for what it is.

An opportunity to access the offered support and make things better for everyone involved. The organisation will need to prove itself to the authorities and regain trust, but taking the correct steps and measures will enable you to achieve this with no problem.

100’s of healthcare facilities across England are turning to Florence to reduce their costs, streamline their processes, fill temporary shifts and potentially source high-quality full-time workers.

There is no cost to list a shift and signing up takes a few minutes.

Start today by calling us on 020 3911 2555, email us here: or register your interest here.

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