The Care Inspectorate could be empowered to bypass courts to deregister care homes who receive exceptionally poor reports during the Covid-19 outbreak.

This comes as Ruth Maguire MSP asked the Scottish Government how new powers being granted to support the Care Inspectorate would ensure high standards of care quality in Scottish care homes.

The MSP for Cunninghame South asked the question today in the Scottish Parliament following a Ministerial Statement on care homes.

This comes as the Scottish Parliament is debating the implementation of a second Coronavirus Bill which will give additional powers to the government to tackle the pandemic.

Speaking in chamber, Ms Maguire asked: “Residents and families must be assured that they will receive the highest quality of care and that robust action will be taken where that is not the case. Can I ask how new powers proposed will new powers proposed will bolster the work of the Care Inspectorate to ensure that happens in practice?”

Health Minister, Jeane Freeman responded citing an amendment proposed in the bill which will enable the Care Inspectorate to bypass their need to apply to the court to deregister a facility which has received a report of significantly poor quality. This would require the Scottish Government to then retrospectively seek permission from the courts.

Providing further comment, Ruth Maguire said: “This is a really difficult time for everyone and I know that residents in Care Homes and their families, will be feeling quite acutely the necessary restrictions to visiting and that reduced contact may exacerbate worry and concern.

“Families are entitled to feel secure that their relatives being looked after in care homes are receiving the best possible level of care, particularly during this pandemic. Where this is not the case, the Care Inspectorate should be empowered to take necessary action to correct this.”

The full exchange can be viewed below: