CQC announces regulatory fees for health and social care
Following consultation with the health and social care providers it regulates, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) has announced the fees that will be paid by providers from 1 April 2011 under the Health and Social Care Act 2008. These have been approved by the Secretary of State for Health.
The fees reflect government guidance to CQC that it must recover the costs of regulation from providers.
CQC received 767 responses to the consultation, from a total of about 21,000 providers. These included responses from major stakeholders representing different sectors.
Consideration of the responses led to a number of changes from the original proposals. These included:
– Reducing fees to small dental providers and independent ambulance providers by approximately 50 per cent*, with a review of our assumptions on the level of regulatory activity and associated costs for these newly regulated providers in the first year.
– Phasing the increases in fees to small care homes over several years
– Small increases in fees to larger homes.
CQC Chief Executive Cynthia Bower said: “Our approach to fees is based on fairness and on raising only as much income as we need to cover the costs of regulation. We have listened to what providers told us during the consultation and have made changes to address concerns”.
The new fees scheme standardises the way providers will be charged fees from 1 April 2011. All providers will receive a single annual invoice; provider and manager registrations and variations to registration will not be charged for separately. All providers will be charged depending on where they sit within a number of categories and bands – for example, NHS organisations are in bands determined by turnover; bands for care homes relate to the number of registered places in a home; bands for dental providers relate to the number of locations (surgeries).
* Dental providers and independent ambulance providers with one location will pay £800 instead of the £1500 we proposed; dental providers with two or three locations will pay £1600 instead of the proposed £3000.