|Welcome to our website. It's always a work in progress and your feedback is welcome|
(If anyone has recently gone through the system, please do let us know how you got on!)
The current NHS complaints system came into force in April 2009. The NHS Constitution explains your rights in respect of complaints but in summary you have the right to:
The NHS also commits:
There are two stages in the NHS complaints procedure; local resolution and the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman.
If you need help in making your complaint there are organisations that can provide this:
Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS)
You can find details of your local PALS in your local doctor’s surgery and hospital. Their advice is confidential and they offer information and support on any health-related matter. Their contact details are on their website: http://www.nhs.uk/chq/Pages/1082.aspx?CategoryID=68
Independent Complaints Advocacy Service (ICAS)
ICAS is a free, independent advocacy service that can help you make a complaint about any aspect of your NHS care or treatment. This includes treatment in a private hospital or care home that is funded by the NHS.
However, they cannot help you if your case has already gone to the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman so think carefully before you go to that stage of the complaints system.
The ICAS service is delivered by three different organizations depending on where you live in the UK:
South West, South Central and South East of England is delivered by Support, Empower, Advocate, Promote (SEAP).
For their information about NHS Complaints go to:http://www.seap.org.uk/services/nhs-complaints-advocacy/ See below the contacts for all the SEAP areas:
East Midands, North East, North West, Yorkshire & Humberside is delivered by The Carers Federation.
For their information about NHS Complaints go to: http://www.carersfederation.org.uk/
The following areas can be contacted on: 08088 023000
London, The West Midlands, The East Of England is delivered by People of Hertfordshire Want Equal Rights (POhWER).
For their information about NHS Complaints go to: http://www.pohwer.net/about-us/form
The following areas can be contacted on: 03004 562370
Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB)
Your local CAB will be able to offer support and advice on how to complain. Information on NHS Healthcare can be found at: http://www.adviceguide.org.uk/england/healthcare_e.htm
For their on-line advice guide on NHS complaints go to: http://goo.gl/NBTIZ or telephone them:
Public Law Project
The Public Law Project is an independent, national, legal charity which aims to improve access to public law remedies for those whose access is restricted by poverty, discrimination or other similar barriers. They have some excellent information leaflets on complaints, which include:
Guide to complaints to the Ombudsman:
Making an Effective Complaint to a Public Body:
The NHS Choices website has an explanation about how to complain, plus some handy tips:
To visit this section of their website go to:
Doctors have set time limits in which to respond (three days in most cases) and they have to monitor and record all complaints. They also have to write an annual report about the number of complaints, the subject matter of the complaints and any matters where action has been or is to be taken to improve services as a consequence of those complaints. Under the Freedom of Information Act, we may be able to find out exactly how many complaints have been made about the treatment of thyroid disease and exactly how they are dealing with it.
The original Department of Health Consultation Paper – Making Experiences Count: A new approach to responding to complaints can be found at:
If anyone has recently gone through the system, please do let us know how you got on!
Last updated 25/03/2015