Towards Outstanding is an essential guide for health and social care services that are regulated by the Care Quality Commission. Written by a senior CQC inspector, it shows how a mindset of getting the basics right then applying context-specific finishing touches can allow any service to drive improvement and move towards an ‘Outstanding’ rating. The author also explores why, in addition to other patient and organisational benefits, good care is cheaper to provide than poor care. Structuring her advice around the ‘five questions’ that CQC inspectors use (are services safe, effective, caring, responsive and well-led?), she draws on personal vignettes to paint a picture of a service where trust, positivity, a shared vision and a commitment to continuous improvement allow staff to generate new ideas, reflect on best practice, raise concerns where necessary and keep the patient at the centre of all activity.