Members of the public will be able to rate care homes for the elderly on a new TripAdvisor-style website, under plans being developed by the Government.
All care providers would be rated in a searchable online database, set to work in a similar way to the popular hotel reviews site. Records of mistreatment or abuse by staff will be included, along with the latest information from inspections as well as feedback from residents and their relatives.
The system is intended to expose failures to treat people with dignity and respect, including abuse and theft. Full details will be set out in a White Paper on social care, due to be published in the spring.
Under the proposals, relatives of care users will also be encouraged to join scrutiny teams, who will visit residents to speak about their experience of care. The care services minister, Paul Burstow, has asked officials to work out how to implement the plans, which emerged following a consultation with the public and charities.
"It can't be right that you can find out exactly what a hotel or restaurant is like in just a short time searching the web, but people have so much trouble working out the standards of different care homes and home care providers," he said. PA