Raise an issue about the quality of a care service

How professionals or care providers can report issues with the quality of a service which do not meet safeguarding thresholds.

1 Definition of a quality issue

A quality issue is where the practice or care being delivered by a care provider falls short of expected standards but does not indicate abuse or neglect which would meet Safeguarding Thresholds.

Examples of quality issues

  • An adult who is susceptible to pressure damage is not assessed properly on one occasion, but no skin damage is present.
  • An assessed need is not documented in a care plan, such as a liquid diet. However, the provider identifies this and addresses it before harm occurs.

Where there is a risk of abuse or neglect and/or injury in the above scenarios, this would indicate a potential safeguarding concern and should be raised via the Safeguarding referral portal.

Further information regarding the difference between a quality and a safeguarding concern can be found on the West Sussex Safeguarding Adults Board website.

Complaints about a care provider should be raised directly with the provider via their internal complaints procedure.

Issues with individual's care needs should be discussed with the relevant social care worker if appropriate, as the quality issue route is primarily for concerns with service quality.

Raising a quality issue does not replace the care provider's statutory notification responsibilities - notifiable information should still be sent to the Regulator, the Care Quality Commission.

2 How to raise a quality issue

If you or someone else is in immediate danger, call the police on 999.

Where there is a risk of abuse or neglect and/or injury, this would indicate a potential safeguarding concern and should be raised via the Safeguarding referral portal.

If you have concerns regarding the quality of care or practice being delivered by a care provider, you should raise a quality referral.

Raise a quality referral (external link)

If you report a concern outside of usual working hours (Monday-Friday, 9.00am to 5.00pm) it will not be viewed until the next working day.

3 What happens next and how the information is used

Quality issues that do not constitute a complaint or meet safeguarding thresholds will be reviewed and the information considered in terms of overarching themes.

Where thematic concerns are identified, these will be discussed and, where appropriate, action will be taken, which could be in the form of a monitoring visit or a multi-disciplinary meeting.

Non-thematic quality issues will be recorded for future reference and, should further concerns be received with similar themes, further action will be considered.

Unfortunately, we are unable to respond directly to each quality issue received. However, there may be an occasion where we need to contact you for further information.

Last updated:
3 June 2024
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  • West Sussex County Council will only use this email address to respond to any issues raised.