Care Standards Bill [Lords] — Statement of national minimum standards — 12 Jul 2000

Mr Stuart Bell MP, Middlesbrough voted with the majority (No).

As amended in the Standing Committee, considered.

(a) any changes which the Commission thinks should be made, for the purpose of securing improvement in the quality of services provided by local authorities in England in the exercise of relevant functions, in the standards set out in statements under section 48; and

(b) any other matter connected with the exercise by local authorities in England of relevant functions.'-- [Mr. Hutton.]

Brought up, and read the First time.

I beg to move, That the clause be read a Second time.

Mr. Deputy Speaker (Mr. Michael Lord):

With this it will be convenient to discuss the following: Government amendment No. 53.

6A. The Commission shall establish a Healthcare Committee chaired by a Commissioner who shall have specific responsibility for the Commission's functions in respect of independent hospitals.

6B. The Secretary of state shall appoint a Deputy Chairman of the Healthcare Committee from the staff of the Commission for Health Improvement ("CHI"), and the Deputy Chairman shall have

for the purposes of its functions.

premises which are used . . . by a local authority in its discharge of relevant functions.

My reading of the Bill was that the reference in subsection (1)(b) to premises used by a local authority in the discharge of its relevant functions would include the private home of a foster carer, where a child is being fostered as part of the discharge of the local authority's functions. Will the Minister say whether that is correct?

Other amendments are coming up that will allow us to discuss that. There will be an opportunity for National Care Standards Commission inspectors to have access to the homes of private foster carers, because that is entirely appropriate.

I then asked the Minister the same question again:

Will the Minister answer my specific question? Does the reference in subsection (1)(b) to premises used by a local authority for the discharge of its relevant functions include a private home in which a child is fostered?

My advice is that it does not include the private homes of foster carers.--[ Official Report, Standing Committee G , 22 June 2000; c. 428-29.]

The appropriate Minister may prepare and publish statements of national minimum standards applicable to establishments or agencies.

The appropriate Minister shall keep the standards set out in the statements under review and may publish amended statements.

the appropriate Minister shall consult any persons he considers appropriate.

shall keep the standards . . . under review

shall consult any persons he considers appropriate--

The Commission may at any time give advice to the Secretary of State on . . . any changes which the Commission thinks should be made.

The Commission may at any time give advice to the Secretary of State on--

(a) any changes which the Commission thinks should be made . . . and

(b) any other matter connected.

The Commission may at any time give advice . . . under section 48.

The report of the person who held the inquiry shall, unless the Minister who caused the inquiry to be held considers that it would be inappropriate to publish it, be published in a manner which that Minister considers appropriate.

considers it necessary or expedient to have for the purposes of its functions under this Part.

The commission shall establish . . . an independent Healthcare Committee . . . a Nursing and Care Homes Committee . . . a Directorate of Independent Health Care . . . a Directorate of Nursing and Care Homes . . . The Secretary of State may by regulations define the respective responsibilities . . .

an Independent Healthcare Committee chaired by a Commissioner who shall have specific responsibility for the Commission's functions in respect of independent hospitals . . .

An authority may make arrangements with persons under which they, or members of their staff, may perform functions of members of the staff and of the authority.

the registration authority may at any time require a local authority to provide it with any information relating to the discharge by the local authority of relevant functions which the registration authority considers it necessary or expedient to have for the purposes of its functions under this Part . . .

a person authorised to do so by the registration authority--

may at any time enter and inspect premises which are used, or which he has reasonable cause to believe to be used, by a local authority in its discharge of relevant functions.

necessary or expedient to have for the purposes of its functions under this Part.

in relation to records which are kept by means of a computer, power to require the records to be produced in a form in which they are legible and can be taken away.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause read a Second time, and added to the Bill.

(2) The Secretary of State may publish different statements under subsection (1) in respect of different descriptions of establishments or agencies.

(3) Before publishing a statement or amendments to a statement, the Secretary of State shall comply with the requirements of subsections (4) and (5) below.

(4) The Secretary of State shall--

(a) consult such persons as he considers appropriate and, in determining who to consult, he shall take advice from the Commission; and

(b) request the Commission to give him advice as to the likely impact of the proposed statement or the proposed amendment on--

(i) the aggregate supply of the service provided by establishments or agencies of the type concerned in England and Wales; and

(ii) the cost of supplying such services in accordance with the statement of minimum standards;

and shall then publish a draft of a statement or of amendments to a statement.

(5) The Secretary of State shall lay before both Houses of Parliament a draft of any proposed statement of national minimum standards or amendments to a statement together with copies of representations received in respect of the consultation under subsection (4)(a) and the advice received from the Commission under subsection (4)(b).

(6) No statement of national minimum standards shall have effect unless a draft of it has been laid before each House of Parliament in accordance with subsection (5) and has been approved by resolution of each House of Parliament.

(7) Where a statement of national minimum standards applies to an establishment or agency, no person may be registered in respect of that establishment or agency unless the applicable national minimum standard is complied with.'.-- [Mr. Hammond.]

Brought up, and read the First time.

I beg to move, That the clause be read a Second time.

Mr. Deputy Speaker:

With this it will be convenient to discuss the following: Amendment No. 38, in clause 22, page 13, leave out lines 14 and 15.

prepare and publish statements of national minimum standards applicable to establishments or agencies

the cost of supplying such services . . . ?

The standards shall be taken into account

in any proceedings for an offence under regulations.

share with the Committee some of the detailed thinking--[ Official Report, Standing Committee G , 6 June 2000; c. 29.]

requirements as to the financial position of an establishment or agency.

make provision in the case of an establishment providing cosmetic surgery

the nature of statements that may be made with regard to the services provided; and . . . the titles that may be used to describe persons carrying on, managing or employed at such an establishment.

consult such persons as he considers appropriate

request the Commission to give him advice as to the likely impact of the proposed statement or the proposed amendment

the cost of supplying such services in accordance with the statement of minimum standards.

Basically, this is another idea developed by those who do not know and never ask.

We are negotiating a loan to improve our facilities and have been experiencing difficulties with lenders directly due to the possible implication of these proposals. We are now having to alter plans and hope this will satisfy lenders. This will increase our loan and without an adequate increase in fees, budgets will be very tight. These are onerous standards, financially wasteful and will threaten small establishments.

The larger homes can easily absorb costs. Is this the future--the large plcs controlling the care sector?

We've just spent a fortune upgrading to existing standards. If new standards are introduced, we would have to close. Residents would lose their homes, staff would lose their jobs and we would be devastated.

Standards must be meaningful, and concentrate on quality, not merely on physical standards . . . The RNH is 100 per cent. committed to quality care but have been saying for some time that it is unjustifiable to raise physical standards any further in a climate of decreasing resources.

We comply with all the current regulations. I have difficulty comprehending how an increase in bedroom size can have that great an effect on the care and wellbeing of our residents. The vast majority spend no waking time in them whatsoever. We employ more care staff per week than the basic requirement, our staff are comprehensively trained and care is of the highest standard. These standards would bankrupt us. Eighteen residents would be homeless. Twenty-four staff, many of them breadwinners, would be unemployed.

In our experience, most of our residents have used the bedroom only for sleeping in at night and a few for a nap after lunch.

We are seeing Home closures in Norfolk which result in residents being transferred up to 20 miles away

a problem for relatives and friends for . . . maintaining contact

The Care Standards Bill . . . will introduce the regulation and inspection of all types of home care provision, including that provided in sheltered accommodation.--[ Official Report, Westminster Hall , 14 June 2000; Vol. 351, c. 270WH.]

Question put, That the clause be read a Second time:--

The House divided: Ayes 159, Noes 299.

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Party Summary

Votes by party, red entries are votes against the majority for that party.

What is Tell? '+1 tell' means that in addition one member of that party was a teller for that division lobby.

What are Boths? An MP can vote both aye and no in the same division. The boths page explains this.

What is Turnout? This is measured against the total membership of the party at the time of the vote.

PartyMajority (No)Minority (Aye)BothTurnout
Con0 125 (+2 tell)079.4%
Ind0 1033.3%
Lab299 (+2 tell) 0072.4%
LDem0 30063.8%
PC0 2050.0%
UUP0 1011.1%
Total:299 159072.3%

Rebel Voters - sorted by party

MPs for which their vote in this division differed from the majority vote of their party. You can see all votes in this division, or every eligible MP who could have voted in this division

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