Quality checking means that people with a learning disability, autism or both are employed to help us look at the quality of the services they use and tell us how we can make them better.
It is important because some people can find it hard to use NHS services because of complicated forms, words or confusing buildings. Quality checking also looks at how NHS staff work with people with a learning disability, autism or both.
This means that some people are not having important health checks like the annual health check or cancer screening.
What do quality checkers do?
Quality checkers go into NHS services, or other services that the NHS pays for, and look at how they are working and how people use them.
Then the quality checkers tell the service what they can do to make things better and work with services to improve.
Lots of organisations already do quality checking. NHS England is developing toolkits to make these checks the same all across England.
Which services will be quality checked?
We have worked with people with a learning disability, autism or both and some local voluntary groups to develop some draft toolkits which can be used in these NHS services:
- GP services
- Community services such as podiatry clinics
- Accident and emergency
- Mental health services
What will happen next?
Most of the draft toolkits have been tested already and training will happen this year with a number of organisations who deliver local NHS quality checking services.
We will be making the draft toolkits available on our website in the next couple of months and we will ask people to look at them and tell us if they need any changes. We hope the final toolkits will be ready to use by early next year.
Information for service providers and commissioners
Quality checking services can help support providers, clinical commissioning groups and sustainability and transformation partnerships to improve services for people with a learning disability, autism or both.
Improving services will in turn help to improve people’s health and make it less likely that they will need to go into hospital.
For more information about the NHS Quality Checking programme please email england.NHSQC@nhs.net