Complaining

  1. If you are not happy with an NHS service you can make a complaint, ask the service provider you are complaining about (such as GP, dentist, hospital or pharmacist) for a copy of its complaints procedure, which will explain how to proceed.

  2. Alternatively, you can complain to the commissioner of that service, either NHS England NHS England Complaints or your local Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG).  
     
  3. Complaints should normally be made within 12 months of the date of the event that you're complaining about, or as soon as the matter first came to your attention. If longer than this has passed you can still complain but specify why your complaint is late. There is discretion to extend the time limit if you have a good reason (so long as it's still possible to investigate the complaint)

  4. If you're still unhappy, you can refer the matter to the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman  who is independent of the NHS and Government.

  5. The Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) may be able to help you resolve the matter. They are available in all hospitals. You can find them via http://www.nhs.uk/Service-Search They offer confidential advice, support and information on health-related matters to patients, their families and their carers. Also, there may soon be an independent advocacy service in your area to provide you with support if you are considering a complaint about NHS care or treatment. PALS will advise or go to  Support, Empower, Advocate, Promote (SEAP)

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