Two thirds of carers do not see lower standards of care during the COVID-19 crisis as acceptable

Research published in March 2022 by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) found that two thirds of unpaid carers view a lower standard of care during the COVID-19 crisis as unacceptable, even with the massive pressures that care services and carers are under.
Woman stood in front of an ambulance

This research comes as the Care Quality Commission (CQC) calls for feedback from carers to better understand the impact of the pandemic on care and to hear the voices of those on the front line as part of its Because We All Care campaign, launched in partnership with Healthwatch England.

You can share feedback with the CQC here or with our local team at Healthwatch Lewisham here.

The CQC’s Research – Published March 2022

Only 13 percent of adults in England say they know how to share feedback for care they’ve received themselves. For carers, this number is similar with only 12 percent reporting they know how to share feedback about the care the person they’re caring for has received.

The good news however is that this research has found a willingness to give feedback among carers - thinking specifically about care received by someone they care for - 42 percent are more likely to provide positive feedback on health or care services due to the COVID-19 crisis while only 26 percent are more likely to provide negative feedback.

Both positive and negative feedback are important to understand not just what is going wrong, but also to understand and share good practice.

Kate Terroni, Chief Inspector of Adult Social Care at CQC comments:

“I know the incredible challenges that unpaid carers have faced over the course of the COVID-19 crisis even before the pandemic, and I know how valuable their contribution is not just directly to the people they love and care for, but to all of society. That is why I want to hear the feedback they can provide on the care that they witness, because through hearing this we can adapt and bring changes that matter.”

You can provide feedback to the CQC at the Because We All Care page or to the contact centre on 3000 616 161.

“Our research also shows the power and value that giving feedback on care can have. Over half (55%) of those who have provided positive feedback felt better as a result, and 8 in 10 staff value feedback from people and their carers. We use feedback to inform our regulatory action, conducting over 12,000 inspections since the pandemic began to ensure people are receiving high quality care. We could not do this without the concerns people raise, and the positive feedback on services which we are able to use to share good practice.”

Responding to the launch of the carers element of the campaign, Emily Holzhausen OBE, Director of Policy and Public Affairs, at Carers UK said:

“It is vital that carers come forward and provide feedback to the CQC about their experiences of accessing care services – whether those experiences are positive or negative. Doing so helps services to understand what’s working and what isn’t when it comes to health and social care. This enables services to make necessary changes to ensure the delivery of good care, or to replicate best practice across other services. We know from unpaid carers that good care makes a huge difference to carers’ own health and wellbeing, levels of stress and ability to juggle work and care.”

“Providing feedback on a health and care service that you, or the person you care for, have recently experienced is particularly important given the impact COVID-19 continues to have on services that carers rely upon. Carers’ information is valuable to CQC as it helps them decide when, where and what to inspect. We will continue to work closely with CQC to ensure that carers’ voices are heard loud and clear. ”

The CQC’s Research – Published January 2022

This follows research published in January by the CQC which shows that nearly three quarters of carers (73%) say that the COVID-19 lockdown restrictions have had an impact on the mental health of the person they care for. Over half (56%) of carers say that the COVID-19 lockdown restrictions have had an impact on the dignity and independence of the person they care for.

The CQC and Healthwatch England launched #BecauseWeAllCare to help improve care services for all by encouraging everyone to share feedback on their experiences of health and social care.

The public’s views are needed now, more than ever, to help health and social care services respond to patients’ needs – during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond – and improve the quality of care for years to come.

Concerns shared with the CQC help the regulator to spot poor care quickly and take action. Whether you have positive feedback or a concern that a loved one or someone you care for is not getting the care they should, or is being put at risk, do not hesitate to share your concerns using the CQC’s online feedback form or to speak directly to your care provider.

Because We All Care Campaign

The Because We All Care campaign aims to help services identify and address quality issues and support patients by encouraging people to share feedback on individual experiences of health and social care services in England. The campaign was launched by the CQC and Healthwatch England in July 2020 and over 50,000 people so far have shared their ideas and experiences of how care can be made better.

Everyone has different experiences of care, so it’s important to hear feedback on health and social care from everyone. Share your care experience to ensure services work better for everyone.

You can give feedback on your experiences of care, or the experience of someone you care for, on the CQC website or at your local Healthwatch website.

If you wish to raise a concern about your care, or about the care received by a loved one or by someone you care for, you can let CQC know by filling out the Give feedback on care form, or calling the contact centre on 3000 616 161.

You can give local feedback by reaching out to our team at Healthwatch Lewisham by clicking here.

If you would like to speak more directly with a member of our team about a concern you have, please feel free to reach out to us via email at or by phone at 2038 860 196.

Contact Information

Lisa Lloyd