CQC steps-up fire inspections
Earlier this year, the Care Quality Commission gave a clear signal that it was changing its approach to inspecting fire safety in care homes. In a letter after the Grenfell Tower fire, Chairman Sir David Behan reminded registered care home managers of their duties in law, asking them to review fire safety processes, ensure they are up to date and "are being applied consistently in practice". In particular, he also asked you to pay attention to the size and fabric of registered premises.
Since then, we have heard from two of our clients that CQC inspectors have asked more detailed questions about fire safety during their visits. While local fire and rescue authorities retain primary responsibility for enforcement, Sir David’s letter indicates that the CQC will be looking at whether:
- you have an up-to-date fire risk assessment, and have implemented its recommendations
- you have provided fire safety information and training for your employees
- your fire extinguishers, doors, detectors and alarms are regularly inspected and maintained
- your fire evacuation plans are suitable and sufficient for those at higher risk
- your emergency routes and exits are kept clear
They will be including this in your ratings, and liaising with fire and rescue authorities where they have serious safety concerns.
If you already have a good handle on fire safety, you don’t need to worry about this new level of inspection from the CQC. If you have any doubts, please get in touch for no-obligation advice. We work closely with care homes in Hampshire, and offer fire risk assessments, training (including evacuation chair training), emergency evacuation plans and drills, and broader consultation services. We understand care homes and can offer training times to suit your shift patterns.
Contact Jason: Jason.firstname.lastname@example.org or 01329 511995