The government has launched a consultation on plans to legally require hospitals, GPs and care homes to display their Care Quality Commission rating in visible places, such as entrances or waiting rooms.
The proposed plans would apply to all organisations rated by the CQC – including NHS and foundation trusts, independent hospitals, social care and GP surgeries.
The government said it hoped the new law on displaying ratings would come into force by April 2015.
“Putting the scores on the doors will help to inform people’s choices, celebrate clinical success and drive up standards of care”
Plans for CQC ratings to be displayed at hospitals, GP surgeries and care homes will help the public see how they are performing and make more informed choices about their care, according to the Department of Health.
Under the proposals, public and private healthcare organisations will have to clearly display their inspection rating showing whether they are “outstanding”, “good”, “require improvement” or “inadequate”.
The CQC rating must be clearly visible, such as in waiting rooms or entrances, and must be published on their websites with a link to the regulator’s inspection report.
The CQC will test public awareness of the ratings by asking patients if they know the CQC rating of their provider as part of their inspection programme, the department added.
Announcing the consultation, health secretary Jeremy Hunt said: “Putting the scores on the doors will help to inform people’s choices, celebrate clinical success and drive up standards of care.”
The consultation plans launched today follow the introduction of the CQC’s new inspection and rating regime for the 25,000 care homes and homecare services in England.