What can you expect in relation to the handling of your complaint

We welcome comments and concerns from members of the public and patients about the work we commission (pay for) and the services we are responsible for in our town and any specialist services you receive in other areas that we commission.

This information explains what you can expect from us when we are handling your complaint.

We will use your initial letter, complaint form, email or details taken during your telephone call to us about your complaint as your statement about what occurred, but we will also include a summary of the points for investigation within our acknowledgement letter to you.

If you have raised concerns about clinical treatment, we will need access to your (or the person you are complaining on behalf of) clinical records relating to the concerns raised. To access these records, we will require your signed consent or the consent of the person you are complaining on behalf of.

Usually, we can’t start our investigation until we receive this consent and may be unable to investigate your complaint adequately without it.

Our investigation of your complaint will involve us passing details of your complaint to the provider(s) of the service (s) you are complaining about. It will also include our Patient Experience Lead (who is not a clinical person) viewing any information disclosed following the provider(s) investigation.

It may also involve us viewing information used or obtained during the investigation, for example copies of relevant medical records. Where clinical issues are involved, we may also need to seek a clinical view from independent clinical advisors who will not be from the organisation you have your complaint with.

The information accessed during the complaint investigation might be used for other purposes, such as monitoring the complaints process and/or improving service quality. However, wherever possible only anonymous information will be used. If identifiable data is needed for purposes other than investigating and responding to your complaint, your consent will need to be obtained unless there is another legal basis.

Once the investigation is complete, we will provide you with a written response to all of the concerns that you have raised. The response you receive will contain details of how your concerns have been investigated, address each of the issues that you have raised and say what the investigation has found in relation to these. If the investigation finds that your concerns are justified, the response will detail actions that will be taken to reduce the likelihood of a future recurrence of the problem

What can I do if I’m not happy with the response to my complaint?

If you remain dissatisfied following our response or if you have further queries, in the first instance you can contact us (by post, email or telephone) with your further concerns or queries and we will review your complaint and our initial response.

Once local resolution has been concluded, if you are still dissatisfied with the outcome of your complaint you can then approach the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman.

How to contact the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman can be contacted on 0345 015 4033 or by email at:

phso.enquiries@ombudsman.org.uk or further information can be found on their website at: www.ombudsman.org.uk/

Or you can write to them at Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman, Millbank Tower, Millbank, London, SW1P 4QP.

What do I do If I need advice or assistance?

If you require advice or assistance with your complaint, this can be obtained from Healthwatch Warrington.

The service is free, confidential and independent of the NHS. Further information, including a self-help pack are available on their website at: www.healthwatchwarrington.co.uk/nhscomplaints-advocacy/ Telephone on 01925 246893 Email at: contact@healthwatchwarrington.co.uk

Is there anyone else who can help me?

Action Against Medical Accidents (AvMA) can provide free independent advice and support to people affected by medical accidents (lapses in patient safety) through their specialist telephone helpline. They also provide self-help guides about making a complaint, visit their website at: www.avma.org.uk/help-advice/complaints/ Telephone: 0845 123 2352 (see website above for information regarding call charges)

Contact NHS Warrington Clinical Commissioning Group

You can contact our Patient Experience Team by: Telephone: 01925 843 743 or (freephone) 0800 389 6973.

Email: complaints.nhswarringtonccg@nhs.net

Writing to our Patient Experience Team: NHS Warrington Clinical Commissioning Group Arpley House 110 Birchwood Boulevard Birchwood Warrington WA3 7QH