Inspecting and regulating care
By inspecting care we help to ensure that healthcare services
are meeting the required standards of care, that good practice is
identified and areas for improvement are addressed.
Our inspectors undertake announced and unannounced inspections
of healthcare services. These will involve physical inspection
of the clinical areas, and interviews with staff and patients. We
will publish a written report 8 weeks after the inspection.
- Announced inspection: the service provider
will be given at least 4 weeks’ notice of the
inspection by letter or email.
- Unannounced inspection: the service provider
will not be given any advance warning of the
- Follow-up inspection: the NHS board and
hospital may or may not be given advance notice of the inspection.
A safety and cleanliness follow-up inspection will take place no
later than 26 weeks from the publication of the
Part of our role is to undertake inspections of independent healthcare services across
Scotland. We are also responsible for the registration and
regulation of independent healthcare services.
Healthcare Improvement Scotland inspectors check independent
healthcare services regularly to make sure that they are complying
with necessary standards and regulations. They do this by carrying
out assessments and inspections.
Care of older people
Healthcare Improvement Scotland measures NHS boards against a
range of standards, best practice statements and other national
documents relevant to the care of
older people in acute hospitals.
Our inspections focus on the three national quality ambitions
for NHSScotland, which ensure that the care provided to patients is
person-centred, safe and effective.
The inspections ensure that older people are being treated with
compassion, dignity and respect while they are in an acute
Safety and cleanliness
Each year, the Healthcare Environment Inspectorate (HEI)
carries out at least thirty safety and cleanliness inspections across
NHSScotland hospitals and services.
Although most of our inspections are to acute hospitals, we also
inspect community and non-acute hospitals.
We publish all our inspection reports from each area of
inspection on our website.
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