Understanding The CQC’s Key Lines of Enquiry (KLOE): Are They Effective?

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The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of health and social care in England. The purpose of the CQC policies and procedures is to make sure health and social care services provide people with safe and high-quality care.

To safeguard care homes, CQC inspectors use the five Key Lines of Enquiry (KLOE), and the process centers around five key questions. For each question the CQC has set out what ‘outstanding’, ‘good’, ‘requires improvement’ and ‘inadequate’ looks like.

There are a lot of things to consider when striving for an outstanding or good rating. But the first and most important thing is to make sure that your care home policies align with the CQC.

To help you, we have put together a series breaking down the five KLOEs. In this blog, we will focus on answering the CQC’s question, “are you effective?”

Knowing People’s Needs and Delivering Treatment

Even though effectiveness can be demonstrated more by outcomes, having a clear care home policy on how you assess people’s needs can make a difference. Bear in mind that people’s mental and social needs are as important as their physical and medical needs.

When making any care and support decisions, it is crucial to CQC policies and procedures that you ensure that there is no discrimination taking place. Another part of being effective is using modern and up-to-date technology that provides better care for patients. Don’t forget that technology doesn’t necessarily mean digital innovation. From better administrative services to staff training, technology can be a powerful tool.

Well-Trained, Skilled, and Experienced Staff

We all know that staff play a central role in any care home. Hiring, training, and supporting skilled employees shouldn’t be taken lightly.

CQC policies and procedures are in place to ensure that your team knows how to deliver quality care. Your team has to be trained to communicate and work with each other and operate in a wider setting. Plus, to safeguard care homes, CQC inspectors will check if referrals are made to other services by your staff when needed and in a timely manner. So, an effective care home policy should be crystal clear on what is expected of employees.

Balanced Nutrition and Hydration

Don’t forget that involving people in everyday activities is central to CQC standards. Even when it comes to nutrition, your care home policy should include ways to promote residents’ independence. For example, offering support for residents to make their own meals, based on their cultural preferences and needs, will have a positive impact.

Accessible and Well-Maintained Premises

As the saying goes, cleanliness is next to godliness. And your care home should be no exception.

To adhere to CQC policies and procedures, premises must be kept clean, looked after, and be suitable for treatment and care. Also, ensure that proper arrangements are in place. People need to have space for their activities or to spend time alone.

Consent to Care and Treatment

It is essential to CQC policies and procedures that people must give their consent before they receive any care or treatment. If the person cannot consent, consent must be received from the person acting on their behalf.

That’s where an effective care home policy comes in, and it informs about how situations like these should be handled. You also should ensure that your team is aware of the relevant consent and decision-making requirements of legislation, including the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and the Children’s Acts 1989 and 2004, and other relevant national guidance.       If you are looking for your care home policies to ensure you are providing high-quality, CQC-approved care, check out our expansive library here.

Understanding The CQC’s Key Lines of Enquiry (KLOE): Are They Safe?

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is England’s independent regulator of health and social care. The CQC policies and procedures ensure high-quality care standards are met throughout the industry. They do this by giving ratings to care settings of either outstanding, good, requires improvement, or inadequate.

To safeguard care homes, they have established five Key Lines of Enquiry that are meant to be answered during CQC inspections.

To ensure your care home policies align with the CQC, The Policy Library has put together a series breaking down the five Key Lines of Enquiry (KLOE).

The first blog in the series will focus on: Are they safe?

Safeguarding individuals from abuse

When the CQC asks about safety, the first thought is protecting individuals from elder abuse and negligence according to care home policy such as the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2014: Regulation 13.

While abuse is a heavy discussion, it is vital to safeguard your care home from abuse and negligence through effective care home policies.

Abuse can come in the form of physical, sexual, mental or psychological, financial, and discrimination.

Not all safety concerns will come from abuse. Instead, the negligence of individuals or the care settings can lead to harm, which is why it will be essential to provide practical training on safeguarding in care homes.

Ensure your staff report and document any concerns they have about individuals and the care setting and implement the appropriate changes promptly.

Individuals, their families, and advocates should know exactly who they can report to and how they can access information if they have any concerns about their safety.

Proper and safe use of medications

Individuals, their families, and advocates must understand why they are taking medications to promote their freedoms and choices about their care.

Proper use of medication also means that your staff is experienced in distributing medicines and that your staff is using the medicine for its intended purposes and giving to individuals at the correct times.

Confirm that your care home system covers medication distribution so that you adhere to CQC policies and procedures.

Protection and control of infection

The Coronavirus has shown just how rapidly infection can spread, especially in care homes.

CQC policies and procedures are in place to prevent the spread of infection, and your staff should thoroughly record and document any outbreak that they are treating.

Your care home policy should also have cleaning schedules recorded thoroughly to ensure individuals and staff are living and working in hygienic care settings.

It will be essential that your policies ensure your staff are taking care of their hygiene to provide quality care to individuals.

Learning and improving from mistakes

Accidents will always happen, but it is crucial to CQC policies and procedures that your care home has effective policies and systems to resolve incidents quickly.

It is also crucial to thoroughly report and document any incidents that arise throughout their shifts.

If you are looking for your care home policies to ensure you are providing high quality, CQC approved care, check out our expansive library here.

Guidance update: Vitamin D for vulnerable groups

We have updated our Policy on ‘Meeting Nutritional and Hydration Needs’ within our Care Homes, Domiciliary Care and Supported Living packages to include a section on supplements.

This is to reflect the new guidance as a result of the Department of Health and Social Care’s initiative to offer a free 4-month supply of vitamin D supplements to the clinically extremely vulnerable and care home residents.

This initiative is designed to support general health, and in particular bone and muscle health, as these groups are at higher risk of vitamin D deficiency since they have spent more time indoors this year.

Health and wellbeing for care workers

Dedicated app for social care workers

The Department of Health and Social Care have launched an app designed to help and support those working in our care sector.
Join the Official Department of Health and Social Care COVID-19 Workforce app to:

• Get up-to-the-minute advice on everything you need to know about managing Covid-19, all in one easy-to-access digital hub
• Practical resources on everything from daily briefings to the latest on safety and procedural advice
• Exclusive offers, wellbeing tips, and more

Download the CARE Workforce app for the latest information, support and discount offers

Download on Google Play
Download on the App Store


Guidance report: The psychological needs of healthcare staff as a result of the Coronavirus pandemic

This is a guide for leaders and managers of healthcare services who will need to consider the wellbeing needs of all healthcare staff (clinical and non-clinical) as a result of the Coronavirus outbreak.

It offers practical recommendations for how to respond at individual, management and organisational level involving the appropriate utilisation of expertise within their practitioner psychologist and mental health professionals and anticipates the psychological reactions over time, and what people may need to recover psychologically from this.

Access the full report here.


Support your team and yourself with free Guides to Wellness Action Plans from MIND

Wellness Actions Plans (WAPs) are an easy, practical way of helping you to support your own mental health at work and, if you are a manager, helping you to support the mental health of your team members.

Everyone can complete a Wellness Action Plan, you don’t need to have a mental health problem in order to feel the benefits. It just means that you already have practical steps in place to ensure you are supported when you aren’t feeling great.

MIND have three guides available which you can fill in electronically:

  • Our Guide for line managers is for managers or supervisors who are interested in introducing WAPs to their team members.
  • Our Guide for employees is for any member of staff who would like to try a WAP for themselves and introduce the idea of using WAPs to their manager or supervisor.
  • Our Working from home WAP is designed to support staff with their mental health and wellbeing when working from home.

Register for your guide here.


Wellbeing support line for health and social care workers

Samaritans have launched new, confidential support lines for health and social care workers and volunteers based in England and Wales.

The support lines are run by Samaritans and all calls are answered by trained Samaritans volunteers, who provide confidential, non-judgmental support.

The confidential support line is open 7 am to 11 pm, 7 days a week, and is run by dedicated and trained Samaritan volunteers who are self-isolating following government guidance. You can call them for free on the number below.

You can also access their free poster here