Annual accountability hearings: responses and further issues - Health Committee Contents

Conclusions and recommendations

Regulation of healthcare professionals

1.  The Committee welcomes this statement. In the light of the importance of this process to the quality of services delivered to patients, and of the status of the GMC as an independent regulator, the Committee looks to the GMC to give early and public notice if it concludes that delivery of this timetable is at risk. (Paragraph 4)

2.  The Committee supports the NMC's intention to focus, as its first priority, on the revalidation and fitness to practise procedures for nurses and midwives. We also support additional focus on training for healthcare support workers, and believe the NMC should keep the regulatory structure for this element of the caring workforce under regular review. (Paragraph 9)

3.  In its next meeting with the NMC, the Committee will wish to review the progress it has made towards strengthening its revalidation and fitness to practise procedures. The Committee will also wish to discuss with the NMC the outcome of the CHRE's review, and review those recommendations which may help the Council better to perform its core functions. (Paragraph 10)

Professional responsibility

4.  The Committee continues to believe that the effective exercise of professional responsibility is the bedrock on which high standards of patient care are built. It also continues to believe that there is an essential public interest in ensuring that professionals are protected against punitive action when they raise concerns about professional standards at their place of work. In view of the importance of these issues we intend to continue to pursue them in our sessions with the professional regulators later in the year. (Paragraph 14)

5.  The Committee also looks forward to the findings of the Francis Committee of Inquiry into Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust and what it may have to say about the conduct of professionals there. (Paragraph 15)

Care Quality Commission

6.  The performance and capability review is a substantial document which sets out some real challenges for the CQC. In our next session with CQC the Committee will wish to review the progress it has made against the twenty three recommendations of the review. (Paragraph 19)

7.  It will also wish to review the progress of the CQC in responding to the recommendations of the Francis inquiry and the extent to which there are issues for the organisation beyond those identified in the performance and capability review (Paragraph 20)

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Prepared 7 March 2012