In October 2009, the Department of Health (DH) published the new requirements that providers of health and social care must meet in order to operate under the new registration system managed and overseen by the Care Quality Commission (CQC). Details of the requirements can be accessed here. Subject to approval by Parliament, the draft Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2009 which can be accessed here and the draft Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Registration of Regulated Activities) Regulations 2009, which can be accessed here will serve as a framework that the CQC will use to regulate providers under the Act.
Broadly, the regulations document the essential levels of safety and quality that are expected of providers. A key provision of the regulations makes it unlawful for organisations to provide services that fall under the framework without having registered with the CQC.
The new regulations replace the DH core standards document Standards for Better Health, and will be introduced for NHS providers of healthcare in April 2010. Implementation for private and voluntary providers of social care is expected in October 2010 and it is further envisaged that the system will extend to other forms of provider in 2011-12.