10 July 2013

Published today, the Cavendish Review outlines the recommendations presented in the wake of the Francis Inquiry into the Mid-Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust and answers the call to ensure that all patients and clients within the health and social care sectors receive the care and compassion they deserve.

The author of the review, journalist Camilla Cavendish, was tasked with exploring ways to improve leadership management and supervision, engagement and support, restoring public confidence and assurance and strengthening training and development to ensure care was provided to the highest standards possible.

Speaking about the review, she said: “We are determined to build a compassionate health and social care system – one where people are always treated as individuals, with kindness and respect.”

Central amongst the review’s recommendations was the development of a ‘Certificate of Fundamental Care’ designed to help raise the standards of care across health, nursing and the social care sector. Such a certificate would not only, “encompass the minimum competence that a support worker in health and social care should achieve before they can start working in intimate care roles”, but also improve transparency, provide a chance for workers to feel pride in their achievements and  raise the status of caring in the eyes of the public – all issues the review identified as needing redress. Linked to National Occupational Standards and building upon National Minimum Standards the certificate would be written in ‘plain English’  – in a language that is meaningful to patients and the public – and be accompanied by guidance also written in plain English.

The review concluded that the public image of the social care workforce was outdated and that the changing nature of social care had led to new complexities and challenges that made it even more important to, “set clear, consistent national standards”.

Further recommendations included:

  • for social care associations and employers to lead a process to agree on core national competences that go beyond the minimum, effectively developing a ‘Higher Certificate of Employment’
  • more should be done to create a career development framework for health and social care workers – allowing talented staff to progress
  • the development of a quality assurance mechanism for training courses and vocational qualifications
  • help for employers looking to recruit staff with the right attitudes and aptitudes  and values for caring.

For the full list of recommendations and conclusions download the Cavendish Review here.

Related articles

Guardian Article: Compassion, respect and dignity must be at the heart of social care practice

Guardian Article: Care workers need better training and regulation, independent review says