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Care Quality Commission’s first chief inspector of hospitals to step down

by Hiba Mahamadi
1 February 2017

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Professor Sir Mike Richards will retire this summer after having served as chief inspector for hospitals for four years.

Richards was appointed in 2013 in a newly created role that led the CQC’s new approach to hospital inspections and ratings launched in the same year. The model involved using larger and more specialist teams of inspectors and experts to rate hospitals using a scale that ranges from “outstanding” to “inadequate”. It was adapted in adult social care and primary medical services in 2014.

He said: “I am incredibly lucky to have had such a long and varied career and I am particularly proud of having led the team who developed and implemented a new approach to hospital inspections – one focused on what matters to people.

“I have also been hugely grateful for the ongoing support and encouragement of external partners, including those whom we regulate. Together, we have laid the strong foundations that will ensure that the next phase of hospital regulation will continue to help providers to drive improvement and to ensure that people receive good, safe care.”

CQC chief executive, Sir David Behan, said: “Sir Mike Richards has helped to transform our national understanding of the quality and safety of hospital care. Thanks to the inspection programme that he developed and led, we have a more complete picture than ever before of how hospitals are performing on quality, based on detailed assessments of individual services.