Regulating the Regulator – make yourselves heard

Throughout the pandemic, the CQC have kept their regulatory approach under review to recognise the changing pressures health and social care services find themselves under.

In 2020, routine inspections were paused and the Emergency Support Framework devised. December 2021 saw CQC postpone inspections in hospital settings to assist with the vaccination roll out. In February 2022, CQC reviewed and updated its regulatory approach with:

  • Inspections from 1 February occurring for all health and social care services where there is evidence of risk of harm, including those areas previously postponed;
  • Prioritised activity to help create greater capacity within social care; and
  • Increased focus upon urgent and emergency care systems.

CQC’s regulatory approach has evolved to assist the sector. The way in which they are regulated has not evolved, or changed. Providers are the CQC’s regulators. If you do not feel that your inspection has been fair or balanced then only you can raise an issue.

In undertaking inspections, the mandatory need for a fair and balanced approach by CQC and the processes they follow, have not changed.

Any concerns you have should be raised within one year of the issue arising, but we would encourage raising  concerns with CQC sooner rather than later to try and resolve issues as soon as possible.

Contact the individual you have been dealing with at CQC in the first instance, after which you will need to make a referral to the Complaints Team ( It’s a totally separate team who will review your complaint and investigate. Alternatively, contact the National Customer Service Centre and if you’re still not satisfied with the outcome, make contact with the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman via your Member of Parliament.

If, as a Provider, you have concerns as to whether due process has been followed, or consider there to have been a failure to adhere to the principles of the Regulators’ Code, prompt action should be taken.

We are here to help with your dealings with the CQC. Find out more from our CQC resources page.

Stay up to date with legal issues for the sector with our social care blog