Throughout the pandemic and in conjunction with the LAA, we have monitored the situation with the Covid-19 pandemic very closely and our audit approach was adapted accordingly. The LAA have now confirmed that the contingency arrangements for Specialist Quality Mark (SQM) post-quality mark audits will end on 16 May 2022. This date will be the last date that a remote or hybrid audit will be able to take place. After this date, all audit activity will need to revert to the traditional site visit arrangement that was in place prior to the pandemic.
In certain exceptional circumstances, the LAA will continue to permit interviews with staff to be conducted via remote means. This would apply where:
• individuals cannot attend the office for COVID-19 reasons*
• our SQM administrator ‘Recognising Excellence’ does not consider the remote interview will affect the quality of the audit
*This applies to interviews only. All other activities must be completed on site.
Where providers have concerns regarding site-based audit activity and feel that there is an exceptional circumstance, they should contact Recognising Excellence directly to discuss the position further.