Recommendation 78

Advisory facility for governors

The Care Quality Commission and Monitor should consider how best to enable governors to have access to a similar advisory facility in relation to compliance with healthcare standards as will be available for compliance issues in relation to breach of a licence (pursuant to section 39A of the National Health Service Act 2006 as amended), or other ready access to external assistance.

Monitor has set up the Panel for Advising Governors, which has a former foundation trust chair as its chair, together with 16 other experienced members. The panel has been operational since May 2013 and is ready to take questions from governors on topics as per the Health and Social Care Act 2012.

Governors may therefore put a question to the existing panel on a breach or potential breach of the trust’s constitution, breach of licence or any other matter under chapter 5 of the National Health Service Act 2006.

The Care Quality Commission has recently written to all councils of governors to confirm the appointment of Professor Sir Mike Richards as the new Chief Inspector of Hospitals, and to highlight and inform governors of the ways in which they can share information and raise issues with the Care Quality Commission, and contribute to the new NHS inspections.

The Care Quality Commission will be piloting ways for governors to contribute directly to the new hospital inspections, as a further route to raising issues.

No further update is required. Please see response to the recommendation in Hard Truths