What does the Care Quality Commission say?
Following a recent assessment and investigation into previously unregistered Intravenous therapy organisations over recent months, the Care Quality Commission will have concluded that all providers administering Intravenous Therapy and Products will now require CQC registration.
As Intravenous drip therapy is now a regulated practice, this means that an individual or organisation cannot practice IV therapy services without CQC registration and practicing as an unregistered provider could now result in legal action.
As a result, any unregistered providers must cease all activity until they are CQC registered. They must legally be suspended until they have undergone the process necessary to becoming a registered practitioner. IV drip providers will need to register with the Care Quality Commission, which includes the competition of the application form and documentation, taking part in the relevant CQC interviews, developing policies and procedures that meet the CQC’s expectations, and achieving a registration against the Care Quality Commission’s Key Lines of Enquiry (KLOEs).
Under the CQC’s classification system, IV treatment treatment now falls under their regulation of ‘treatment of disease, disorder, or injury’.
This is reflective of the ever-evolving categorisations of the Care Quality Commission. They constantly review new and popular healthcare practices and assess the need for regulation. For instance, earwax removal is a practice that has also recently come under regulation.
The Care Quality Commission’s website provides the following specific information regarding their legislation rules under service specific guidance:
Intravenous (IV) products
“Intravenous administration of vitamins or products that are prescription only medicine (including 0.9% saline) that are used to improve or enhance wellbeing constitutes treatment of a disease or disorder. We consider a ‘disease’ to include a pathophysiological response to internal or external factors, and a disorder to include disruption to regular bodily structure and function.
If you provide intravenous administration services you will need to register for the regulated activity if the procedures you offer:
- are delivered by, or under the supervision of, a listed healthcare professional; AND
- include administering prescription-only products intravenously OR products that require a prescription when delivered in intravenous form; AND
- claim to alter a person’s physiological state in response to a defined concern.
We do not consider this type of procedure to be alternative or complementary medicine.”
See a link to the Care Quality Commission’s relevant webpage here: Treatment of disease, disorder or injury | Care Quality Commission (cqc.org.uk)
How we can help unregistered IV drip therapy providers become CQC registered
By registering with the Care Quality Commission to provide IV drip therapy services you are committing to ensuring that all aspects of your business meet with legislative requirements and its associated regulations. This process can be daunting, for both small and large providers of the service.
Dr Atif Ghaffar, Medical Director at CQC Compliance, commented:
“We welcome the CQCs decision following their investigations and recognise that these treatments are not considered “alternative or complimentary” therapies. Patients need to be fully informed about the benefits and potential risks of such treatment as well being made aware of alternatives.
We would expect practitioners to have systems in place to accurately monitor levels of vitamins or any such supplements to justify the doses and frequency of treatments. We are looking forward to support these providers in becoming CQC registered and to remain compliant in the long-term”
This is where we come in. We understand the concern and urgency you may feel to get your IV therapy services registered successfully and efficiently. We can ensure that you are supported in completing the relevant application forms, that you provide all appropriate information, and that you are prepared to demonstrate how you meet the necessary KLOE’s to comply with the CQC’s complicated registration requirements.
We can also help you with the all-important policies and procedures, which are used to underpin all of your processes expected by the CQC.
- We will work with you to produce the relevant registration documents and application forms, including the New Provider Application, Registered Manager Application and the Statement of Purpose.
- We will ensure that all the relevant checks have been completed including, for example, a CQC counter-signed DBS.
- We will support you to meet the CQC Registration requirements of either email or online submissions.
- We will ensure that you understand the Fundamental Standards used by CQC to register, monitor and inspect IV drip therapy against and their associated Key Lines of Enquiry.
- We will support you with training and coaching to help you with your registration interview.
- Our dedicated policy team have a wealth of experience and have successfully supported providers with their policies and procedures development that underpin all your systems and processes as expected by CQC.
More about Intravenous drip therapy
Intravenous drip therapy (IV drip) is an increasingly popular service, as it has a vast range of reported health benefits and can be tailored to a variety of wellbeing aims.
For the treatment, an IV drip is used to administer liquid form high dose vitamins, electrolytes, antioxidants, nutrients, amino acids, medicines, and other beneficial compounds directly into the bloodstream. These are administered into a vein via a small plastic line, with an aim to improve the health and wellbeing of the patient.
IV drips are used to deliver medicines to some patients. For others, providers offer tailored formulas (IV ‘cocktails’) based on their specific aims in administration. These usually contain vitamins, antioxidants, and other nutrients for broader wellbeing purposes.
The reported benefits of IV drip treatment include strengthening immunity, aiding sport injury repair, aiding recovery from COVID-19 (long covid especially), improved wellbeing, increased energy levels, B12 vitamin boost, hair restoration. Again, these potential benefits vary according to patient aims and the specifics of the compounds administered.