I recently spoke at a meeting of inspection bodies and care providers from across Scotland, England, Wales, and Northern Ireland. All the different bodies are developing new approaches to scrutiny that reflects their different roles and remits. I am very clear that the Care Inspectorate is a scrutiny body that supports improvement. That is why we have been changing our approach, and really focusing on the positive impact that care can have for people.
Open and honest relationships between inspectors, people who experience care, and care staff are crucial. Trust is an important element too. Last year, we made clear that where managers tell us that something isn’t working well, and show they have a robust plan in place to address it, we will recognise that as a sign of management strength. We expect to see evidence of those improvements being made, and our inspectors are there to advise and guide managers along the improvement journey.
Openness and candour will become increasingly important in coming years. From 2018, there will be a new duty of candour for all care services in Scotland (except childminders). This means that if things go wrong, care staff will need to apologise and offer to meet with people affected. We will be expecting care services to really learn from what’s happened and show what’s improved as a result. We are working closely with the Scottish Government, SSSC and others to help prepare for the duty – look out for more information soon.