Chief Inspector Imelda Richardson highlighted that “major new laws” – the Regulation and Inspection of Social Care (Wales) Act 2016, and the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014 – will have a significant impact on the work of the Inspectorate, as she launched her 2014-2015 annual report.
Changes to the upper age limit for childcare services which need to be registered – from 8 years to 12 years old – also come into effect from April 2016.
The Chief Inspector said the majority of care providers in Wales deliver the level of care that people deserve.
Of the 4,040 regulated services CSSIW inspected, 91% of these met standards of care and did not need enforcement action.
But a minority required “significant monitoring and enforcement action” by the Inspectorate in 2014-15.
For the 9% of services that did not meet standards of care, the majority made improvements in response to the Inspectorate’s early intervention.
1,115 non compliance notices were issued in relation to 308 services, of which 204 services became compliant after making and sustaining improvements.
However, 52 services struggled to make sustained improvements where by people received poor care that impacted on their well-being and became Services of Concern.
The report explains how the Inspectorate is embedding human rights and well-being outcomes in its updated inspection methods, and continues to collaborate with citizens, service providers, and commissioners to develop clearer standards and regulations for social care in Wales.
A Quality Forum, spearheaded by the Inspectorate, has been formed by strategic partners from across Wales, to redress so-called "wicked issues" in the care system.
The Forum will collaborate to deliver an all-Wales approach to the issues.
Chief Inspector Imelda Richardson said:
Social care is important to all of us, we are all stakeholders and will all be affected by it at some point in our lives.
As an Inspectorate we listen to people, use the intelligence we gather and we take concerns seriously.
I would like to thank our National Advisory Board, chaired by Professor Judith Hall, for both challenging and working with us for a second year. They have been instrumental in contributing towards the changing legislative landscape in Wales and have helped us establish our Regional Advisory Forums which will further strengthen the people’s voice in our work.
I would also like to thank the sector for working with us to improve the care they provide. I understand that the changing social care climate is challenging and there are understandable ripple effects in terms of preparing the workforce.
What I have seen on my regular engagement visits across Wales is that the leaders and managers providing excellent support and services are inspiring others to do the same.
New legislation gives all of us - citizens, providers, commissioners, local authorities and regulators – the opportunity to work together to improve the quality and stability of social care in Wales.