The Care Quality Commisison has published its State of Care Report for 2019/20, which again highlights concerns regarding variations and inequalities in the care provided across a range of settings.

The Report includes data gathered during February and March 2020, a period covering the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

This is the first cycle of CQC inspections where independent ambulance providers were Rated, some 101 providers being visited. Of these, 53% were rated GOOD and 3% OUTSTANDING. Concerns however remain on those Rated INADEQUATE or REQUIRING IMPROVMENT (33% and 11% respectively).

Whilst the CQC found no concerns on the care provided by independent ambulance providers, improvements in safe recruitment and safeguarding are highlighted.

Commenting, IAA Executive Chairman Alan Howson said “It’s pleasing to see over half of  independent ambulance providers were found to be providing a good standard of care. 75% of IAA Members were rated as GOOD or OUTSTANDING, with one (Polaris Medical) Rated OUTSTANDING overall, a fantasic achievement. Yes there’s room for improvement in some areas, but given this was the first visit for many of the providers and the numbers involved, there are many positives to take forward.”

As part of their ongoing response to the pandemic, all providers have been subjected to the CQC’s Emergency Service Framework, to date no major issues been highlighted with independent ambulance providers.