The Commons Health Committee has been told that social care providers are not as focused on projecting a positive image of the profession as they ought to be.
Peter Hay, president of the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services, also told MPs that social care providers have become overly reliant on regulators to maintain standards.
He has, therefore, called on providers to work in unison with service commissioners on contract monitoring and quality assessment.
"One of the key issues here is that social care is in urgent need of reform. It needs a single coherent framework against which we set out what is important and how that is delivered," he remarked.
Meanwhile, Jo Webber, deputy policy director at the NHS Confederation, told the committee that many residential homes are "small islands of care".
"It is very easy, within a small island of care, to get adrift of standards and quality," Ms Webber observed.