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Types of complaint

It’s a common misconception that complaints can only be made about doctors or hospitals.

But you can complain about the actions and decisions of any NHS body, including:

You can also complain about private hospitals as long as the treatment was provided on behalf of the NHS.

For example, you probably have a valid complaint if poor nursing care has led to you developing pressure sores. Or if an A+E consultant failed to diagnose a fracture to your arm.

More serious mistakes might include the wrong drugs being administered, causing an adverse reaction. Or if a GP misdiagnosed a serious illness, such as cancer. Both of these mistakes can have long-term implications for the patient.

What if your routine surgery has been cancelled? Or you’ve been kept waiting longer than you think is acceptable for an appointment? However minor, these are also valid complaints that you can ask to be investigated.

Taking action

If you’re unhappy with the NHS care or treatment you’ve received, you have the right to complain. You also have the right to have your complaint investigated and be given a full and prompt reply.

For guidance and help in making a complaint to the NHS, you can download our useful resources and templates here.

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