Complaints FAQ

What if I don’t want to complain but want to do something? 

We encourage all of our patients, their carers or relatives to speak up if they have been dissatisfied with the standard of care in our Trust. You should tell a member of staff as soon as you are aware of the problem. With most concerns an explanation and reassurance can be provided straight away and any issues resolved. If you don’t feel comfortable doing this you can contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS).

Who can complain?

Anyone who is receiving treatment or has received NHS treatment can complain and if you feel your treatment is affected due to raising a concern you should again contact the Complaints Manager. If you are unable to complain yourself you can ask a friend or relative to make the complaint for you. This will require your consent to enable us to take the matter forward, for us to liaise with any other provider involved and to respond to the person making the complaint on your behalf.

Is there a time limit for complaining?

It is important that you make your complaint as soon as possible after the event you wish to complain about, but generally under the NHS Complaints Procedure it is only possible to investigate complaints made:

Within 12 months of the event or

Within 12 months of you realising you have something to complain about.

What will happen after I’ve complained?

If we cannot resolve your concern immediately we will acknowledge your concern or complaint within 3 working days. A contact number will be provided to give you the opportunity to ring and discuss your concerns. A thorough and fair investigation will then be carried out and we aim to provide a written response from the Chief Executive within 25 working days. If this timescale cannot be met then we will contact you with an explanation.

What will happen after I’ve complained?

If we cannot resolve your concern immediately we will acknowledge your concern or complaint within 3 working days. A contact number will be provided to give you the opportunity to ring and discuss your concerns. A thorough and fair investigation will then be carried out and we aim to provide a written response from the Chief Executive within 25 working days. If this timescale cannot be met then we will contact you with an explanation.

What if you don’t resolve my complaint?

It is important to the Trust that we do all we can to resolve your complaint. If you are still dissatisfied after receiving the Chief Executive’s response, the opportunity is there for you to contact the Complaints Service who will be happy to go through the options with you. This may result in further correspondence from us, or a meeting.

If you’re not happy with our final response to your complaint and would like to take the matter further, you can contact the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman. The Ombudsman makes final decisions on complaints that have not been resolved by the NHS, government departments and some other public organisations. The service is free for everyone. To take a complaint to the Ombudsman, go to www.ombudsman.org.uk/making-complaint or call the helpline 0345 015 4033. It is important you make your complaint as soon as you receive our final response as there are time limits for the Ombudsman to look into complaints.