Care Quality Commission chair to step down
By Richard Johnstone | 7 September 2012
The chair of the Care Quality Commission, Dame Jo Williams, has today announced that she will step down.
In a statement confirming her resignation, Williams said she was ‘proud’ of the progress that the commission had made since she was appointed chair in February 2010.
Williams, who has served on the board of the CQC for almost four years, said that the job had been ‘demanding and complex’ as the entire health and social care system was brought under one set of standards. This has included registering 40,000 providers since the commission was established in April 2009.
However, there was now clear evidence that the regulation is beginning to have an impact on the care people receive, she said.
‘It has been a privilege to hold this important role but I now believe it is time to step aside and for a new chair to lead CQC into the next stage,’ she added.
Williams, who will remain in post until a successor is appointed, said she was delighted to have appointed David Behan as CQC’s new chief executive in June. ‘I am confident that he will continue to build on the progress that we have made in promoting and protecting the health and safety of people who use services,’ she added.
Last month, Williams apologised for the commission’s failings in its response to concerns about abuse at the Winterbourne View care home.
Today’s announcement comes the day after the commission launched a consultation on its strategy for the three years from 2013, and just days before Williams is due to appear before the health select committee. On Tuesday, she will appear alongside Behan to give evidence as part of the second annual accountability hearing for the CQC.
Responding to her resignation, Sir Christopher Kelly, a former permanent secretary of the Department of Health, said Williams has ‘shown tireless commitment to improving care for individuals, carers and their families’.
Andrew Dilnot, the chair of the Commission of Funding of Care and Support, said Williams, who was a commissioner on the inquiry that recommended a cap on adult social care costs, would be missed from the CQC.
‘I have enormous admiration and respect for Dame Jo, her insight, experience and commitment were invaluable to the work of the Commission of Funding of Care and Support, which reported last summer,’ he added.