Essential standards of care

Essential standards of quality and safety

Every health and adult social care service in England is legally responsible for making sure it meets essential standards of quality and safety.

The following list is a summary of the full essential standards that you can expect from us.

The essential standards

1. You can expect to be involved and told what’s happening at every stage of your care

  • You will always be involved in discussions about your care and treatment, and your privacy and dignity will be respected by all staff
  • You will be given opportunities, encouragement and support to promote your independence
  • You will be able to agree or reject any type of examination, care, treatment or support before you receive it

2. You can expect care, treatment and support that meets your needs

  • Your personal needs will be assessed to make sure you get care that is safe and supports your rights
  • You will get the food and drink you need to meet your dietary needs
  • You get the treatment that you and your health or care professional agree will make a difference to your health and wellbeing
  • You will get safe and co-ordinated care where more than one care provider is involved or if you are moved between services

3. You can expect to be safe

  • You will be protected from abuse or the risk of abuse, and staff will respect your human rights
  • You will be cared for in a clean environment where you are protected from infection
  • You will get the medicines you need, when you need them, and in a safe way
  • You will be cared for in a safe and accessible place that will help you as you recover
  • You will not be harmed by unsafe or unsuitable equipment

4. You can expect to be cared for by qualified staff

  • Your health and welfare needs are met by staff who are properly qualified
  • There will always be enough members of staff available to keep you safe and meet your health and welfare needs
  • You will be looked after by staff who are well managed and have the chance to develop and improve their skills

5. You can expect your care provider to constantly check the quality of its services

  • Your care provider will continuously monitor the quality of its services to make sure you are safe
  • If you, or someone acting on your behalf makes a complaint, you will be listened to and it will be acted upon properly
  • Your personal records, including medical records, will be accurate and kept safe and confidential

Visit the Care Quality Commission website for more information about these essential standards and how hospitals are monitored against them