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Impacts of policy drivers on leadership and management in adult care services


This page is designed to answer the following questions:

NOTE: This page has been quality assured for 2024 as per our Quality Assurance policy.

For this assessment criterion, you will evaluate current local and national policy drivers and their impact on leadership and management.


What are policy drivers?


Policy drivers are policies, documents and initiatives which guide the work that needs to be done and the way it should be carried out in order to improve health and social care services.

Factors influencing policy drivers


Several factors influence the development of policy drivers, including:

  • Safeguarding Adults Reviews (previously Serious Case Reviews) – local reviews of cases where a vulnerable adult has been seriously harmed to consider if it could have been predicted or prevented.
  • National enquiries and significant failings
  • Media coverage
  • Feedback and complaints
  • Research and trials

These factors can cause new policies to be written or existing policies to be revised.

Health and Social Care Act Regulations & Fit and Proper Person


The Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2014 introduced new fundamental standards to inform how care is delivered. All registered providers (and registered managers) “must have regard” to the Care Quality Commission’s related guidance so that they are able to meet requirements.

These regulations came about following the Francis Report, which was an inquiry into the failings of the Mid-Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust and are based on the recommendations he presented.


Regulation 5: Fit and Proper Persons sets out requirements for individuals who have director-level responsibilities in a care organisation. The requirements are:

  • (a) the individual is of good character,
  • (b) the individual has the qualifications, competence, skills and experience which are necessary for the relevant office or position or the work for which they are employed,
  • (c) the individual is able by reason of their health, after reasonable adjustments are made, of properly performing tasks which are intrinsic to the office or position for which they are appointed or to the work for which they are employed,
  • (d) the individual has not been responsible for, been privy to, contributed to or facilitated any serious misconduct or mismanagement (whether unlawful or not) in the course of carrying on a regulated activity or providing a service elsewhere which, if provided in England, would be a regulated activity, and
  • (e) none of the grounds of unfitness specified in Part 1 of Schedule 4 apply to the individual.

Source: CQC Guidance for providers on meeting the regulations


To learn more, you should read the full guidance and evaluate how these regulations impact your role in leadership and management. Regulation 17: Good Governance and Regulation 18: Staffing is particularly interesting in this regard.

The Equality Act


The Equality Act 2010 protects employees and the wider public from discrimination, so it is important for managers to understand their responsibilities under this legislation. The Equality and Human Rights Commission have produced several publications, including a Code of Practice intended to provide employers with guidance in this area.

For example, reasonable adjustments must be made to ensure that an individual with a disability is able to perform their job role effectively and recruitment must be fair and equitable for all applicants.


The Care Act 2014

The Care Act 2014 made changes to the way adult social care services are provided. Local authorities are responsible for ensuring assessments are performed for individuals that may require care services (and their carers) with a focus on personalisation, well-being and prevention.


Care managers often work very closely with local authorities in areas such as the provision of services, safeguarding and funding so it is useful for managers to understand the role of the local authority and their responsibilities as set out in the Care Act. It is also useful for managers to be able to challenge local authorities if they have concerns about the work they are doing.

This report published by SCIE in 2015 takes an interesting look at the role of leadership and how it might change following the introduction of the Care Act.



The Care Quality Commission (CQC) have five Key Lines of Enquiry (KLOEs), which they look at during the inspection process. They are:

  • Safe
  • Effective
  • Caring
  • Responsive
  • Well-led

This framework helps to ensure that inspections are consistent across the country and services and that organisations are rated fairly.


For managers, it provides detailed information about their responsibilities and obligations under the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulated Activities) Regulations 2014 and what they need to do to prepare for the inspection process. It can also be used to identify areas that may require improvement.

The Care Certificate


The Care Certificate was developed in response to recommendations from the Cavendish Review, which found that the training and development of healthcare workers were inconsistent or inadequate. It sets out 15 standards (competencies) that all workers new to care should be trained and assessed in as part of their induction.

Managers must ensure that their staff are sufficiently trained in the Care Certificate standards, which can impact planning, resources, systems and policies.

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