Following the introduction of the Health and Social Care Standards in 2018, the Care Inspectorate began to introduce our quality frameworks and gradually withdrew the requirement for services to submit a self-assessment. The primary purpose of a quality framework is to support services to evaluate their own performance. The same framework is then used by inspectors to provide independent assurance about the quality of people’s care and support. We are now ready to expand on this approach by enhancing our methodology around self-evaluation.

We know that most services will already be engaged in self-evaluation as part of their quality assurance activities. Our aim is to empower services to identify their own strengths, areas for improvement and focus on outcomes that matter to people using their services. This approach will further enhance our move to inspections based on risk and intelligence and towards ongoing self–evaluation. This would be complemented by responsive and proportionate inspection activity.

From 1 July 2024, in some adult care services, we will assess and report on service’s self-evaluation of the core assurances during our usual inspections. We know that the core assurances are a key driver to good outcomes and minimising the risk of poor outcomes, which is why we examine these at every inspection. A list of the core assurances can be found in the quality framework for your service type. You can find support, guidance and templates for self-evaluation in our toolkits.

During inspections, inspectors will routinely look for evidence of the service’s self-evaluation process, associated improvement plan and how people’s views have been included. We aim to validate the information contained within the self-evaluation, which will enable us to provide feedback and additional support where required. Whilst we will not formally evaluate (grade) the self-evaluation, we will report on the quality of service’s self-evaluation processes within the key messages section of our reports.