Letter: Data collection during the COVID-19 crisis

care quality commission

The independent regulator of health and social care in England

Joint letter from:
Care Provider Alliance,
Care Quality Commission,
Department of Health and Social Care, NHS England and NHS Improvement

17 April 2020



Dear colleagues,

We are all committed to responding the very best we can during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our primary focus is on the safety and wellbeing of older and disabled people, and their families and carers, care staff and communities.

In that context it is critical that we collectively understand the impact of COVID-19 on the people you care for, your workforce and your ability to deliver services. This is so we can support you to keep the people you care for, and your staff, safe.

To enable us to understand the impact of COVID-19 on the people you care for, your workforce and your ability to deliver services, we need to collect data to ensure resources are targeted most effectively where they are needed. We want to do that in a way that does not cause a burden on you so you can focus on the delivery of safe care.

We have worked across our organisations to ensure we are only asking for essential information from you once and that we establish rapid mechanisms to share information appropriately. This means that you will get the support you need and that local authorities and Local Resilience Forums (LRF) have the intelligence they need to ensure business continuity and to make business critical decisions.

We are asking:

  • Residential and nursing homes to complete only the NHS Capacity Tracker as set out in Coronavirus (COVID-19): admission and care of people in care homes
  • Homecare providers to complete CQC’s ‘Update CQC on the impact of Covid’ online form (from Monday 13 April). This will be rolled out to Shared Lives services, Extra Care and Supporting Living services soon and we will be in contact with them directly when the service is available to them
  • The small number of providers of both homecare and residential and/or nursing homes to complete both data collections.

If you provide this information daily, via the appropriate route, local authorities, CCGs and other local bodies will receive that data. This means they will not need to make the same request and should not be contacting individual homes or services for this data.

This way of working is a requirement for our collective handling of the crisis, but no doubt we will learn valuable lessons from taking this approach that might provide longer-term benefits for all. We will want to identify and discuss those together.

Data is just one type of information that will make it easier for support to be targeted at the right place, at the right time. Mutually supportive relationships between providers and commissioners locally generates a different type of highly valuable information and mutual actions that cannot be replaced by the data we are asking for here.

We will update you regularly on data collection and procedures over the next few weeks and months of this crisis. If you feel that your local authority, CCG, LRF or other body is asking you for duplicate information then please have a conversation and share the national guidance with them. They can be assured that they will receive the information we gather daily from both the Capacity Tracker and the CQC Update. The Care Provider Alliance can also support you with any further queries you may have.

Your daily responses to the CQC Update and Capacity Tracker will ensure we have a true understanding of the challenges being faced and can respond. Targeting the right resource, in the right place, at the right time will save lives.

Yours sincerely

Lisa Lenton signature



Lisa Lenton, Chair, Care Provider Alliance

Kate Terroni signature




Kate Terroni, Chief Inspector of Adult Social Care, Care Quality Commission

Rosamond Roughton signature

Rosamond Roughton, Director of Adult Social Care, Department of Health and Social Care

Matthew Winn signature

Matthew Winn, Director Community Health and SRO for Ageing Well, NHS England/Improvement


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