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What Are The 6 Cs Of Care?

May 19th, 2024

Caring is a demanding but incredibly fulfilling career which extends beyond caregiving. This multifaceted role requires ethical integrity, professionalism and at the root of it all, demonstrating and following the framework for the 6 Cs of care. With this in mind, let’s take a closer look at what the 6 Cs are, what they advocate and why they play a vital role in care homes and our healthcare system.

Why Were The 6 Cs Introduced?

NHS England Chief Nursing Officer, Professor Jane Cummings launched the 6 Cs of care in 2012 as part of her Compassion in Practice strategy, in order to define a set of values that promote health and longevity, support independence and offer comfort to people living with illnesses. To this day, the 6 Cs of nursing care are a benchmark used by care providers and are all equally important in ensuring an excellent standard of care is implemented. 

The Importance Of The 6 Cs Of Care

person making a heart shape to show the importance of the 6 c's of care

It isn’t enough to simply say you care, this needs to be shown through actions too. The 6 Cs in nursing care are important as they provide the healthcare industry a benchmark standard to hold all staff to, therefore improving the quality of care, empowering caregivers and driving accountability. Anyone thinking of moving into a care home wants peace of mind that they will be treated well, and the 6 Cs of care exist to offer this reassurance.

What Settings Do The 6 Cs Of Care Apply To?

The number of people working in the UK adult social care sector for 2022-23 was estimated at 1.79 million. This important framework assists in navigating healthcare professionals through the key fundamentals of their profession. In light of this, the 6 Cs in nursing apply to a wide range of healthcare industries that extends beyond a residential care home setting, including:

  • Ambulances
  • Care homes
  • Clinics
  • Community services
  • Dental surgeries
  • GP surgeries
  • Home care agencies
  • Hospices
  • Hospitals
  • Mental health services
  • Phone/online advice
  • Prison healthcare
  • Services in the home

What Are The 6 Cs Of Care? 

Now that we’ve established why the 6 Cs of care exist, let’s look at exactly what they are and how they are used:

1. Care

Firstly, care is at the core of this industry and the reason why the 6 Cs of care were developed. ‘Care’ is a fairly wide term used within the healthcare industry. Yet, regardless of what sort of care service you are delivering, high-quality care, tailored to individual needs is important, no matter what stage of life patients are at.

2. Compassion

The foundation to providing healthcare lies with compassion, which is built on dignity, respect and empathy. Whether it’s a listening ear or providing unwavering support, these are all vital aspects to any organisation when providing great care. Compassion in care is often exhibited by treating patients with kindness, and actively listening to those you are caring for. Their views and opinions should also be taken into consideration when creating a plan for their care.

people holding hands to show compassion as per the 6 c's in nursing care

3. Communication

Care staff on the frontline are at the heart of the communication process, therefore, making sure information is communicated confidentially and sensitively is paramount at all times. There are many ways to demonstrate effective, open communication when working in care but some examples include:

  • Verbal – one integral part of care is passing information on to families, co-workers and agencies, so it is essential to be able to verbally communicate details of a patient’s condition or care plan
  • Listening – it’s important to make sure that patients and their families are heard and listened to when providing any recommendation or putting a care plan in place
  • Written – workers will often assess, report and record data, so information surrounding a care plan must be accurate, clear and consistent
  • Non-verbal – as many workers in the care industry will explain, sometimes it isn’t about what has been said, a lot of it is being emotionally aware and picking up on body language. Facial expressions, posture and overall demeanour can speak a thousand words. For instance, if a patient is in pain, feeling sad, or experiencing any other negative emotion their body language will often reflect that, even if their words say otherwise.

4. Commitment

The caring profession should never be ‘just a job’. Being a care provider means going above and beyond simply being dedicated to your profession; it’s about being committed to outstanding care and upholding the highest standards. In addition to being committed to fulfilling your role, this element of the 6 Cs of care also refers to diligently setting time aside to build upon existing knowledge and skills through Continuous Professional Development (CPD) and, in turn, putting this into practice.

5. Competence

Competence in care illustrates an elevated understanding of the patients’ needs plus having the clinical knowledge, expertise and skills to carry out your role effectively. Care professionals should have an in-depth knowledge of all of the possible treatments available that may suit their patients’ needs and to proactively help them make the right decision. The 6 Cs of care are also applied to the recruitment process to assess the applicants experience and knowledge within their field of work. 

6. Courage

Doing the right thing is incredibly important to make sure everyone receives the quality of care they deserve. Healthcare professionals should demonstrate courage on behalf of their patients such as speaking up about concerns and taking appropriate action to ensure patient safety and well-being. Also, having the ability to confidently adapt and embrace challenges that may arise within the industry.

Our Care Services 

When it comes to that all-important decision of choosing a care home for your loved one, you can rest assured that all of our staff at New Care Homes embody the 6 Cs of care, and exceptional care comes as standard for all of our residents.

Our luxury care homes are located across the UK, and offer several types of specialist care services from dementia care, to nursing care. Furthermore, all of our homes are equipped with state-of-the-art facilities and set in beautiful surroundings where compassion and kindness is at the ethos of what we do.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch and our friendly team will be happy to help, or alternatively, why not arrange a visit and take a closer look at our fantastic care facilities at your nearest location.