Section 4: Information and advice
38.Subsection (1) provides that the Commission must make available to the public information on the availability and quality of care services. Subsection (2) provides that this information should be made available in any format that may reasonably be requested. Information provided might include details about the location and types of services available as well as the results of the Commission’s inspections of individual care services. This will help members of the public to decide which care services they wish to use.
39.Subsection (3)(a) allows the Commission to provide advice to Scottish Ministers at any time, and requires it to do so in response to a request by Scottish Ministers. Subsection (3)(b) requires the Commission to provide advice to service users and carers and their representatives, local authorities, health boards, care service providers or prospective providers, and any other bodies set out in regulations, about any aspect of its work. For example, the Commission might offer advice to service providers on how to meet the national care standards.
40.The Commission should also provide information to Scottish Ministers under this section about trends in care provision to fulfil the role recommended by the Royal Commission on Long Term Care. Subsection (4) allows the Commission to charge a reasonable fee for any advice, forms or documents it provides in connection with its obligations under subsection (3)(b).