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Making a Complaint

NHS Independent Complaints and Advocacy Service

Knowing how to raise a complaint and exactly who to complain to when you have an issue with health or social care services can be complicated.

When your health care is provided by the NHS you are allowed to make a complaint using the NHS complaints process.

An NHS complaint might include something that happened during care or treatment at a:

  • Hospital
  • GP Surgery
  • Dentist
  • Pharmacist
  • Optician
  • NHS funded care home.

Healthwatch Cheshire CIC offers an NHS Independent Complaints Advocacy Service (ICAS). ICAS advocacy works within the NHS complaints regulations
and can help you to use the NHS complaints process to have your voice heard.

The NHS Independent Complaints Advocacy Service is:

  • Free
  • Independent
  • Confidential.

An ICAS Advocate provides practical support and information to people who want to make an NHS complaint.

This might mean providing you with information so you can pursue a complaint by yourself or work with you to make your complaint.

Advocacy is about helping people to speak up for themselves so an advocate will not tell you what to do.

  • An advocate will work with you so that you feel confident to make a complaint.
  • An advocate can help you with writing letters or write a letter on your behalf.
  • Prepare you for meetings and go to these with you.
  • Contact and speak to people within the health service on your behalf. 

You can find copies of our leaflet, and various documents that make up a Self Help Information Pack below.

Need to make a complaint about Healthwatch?

Individuals and organisations have the right to express their views about the performance of Healthwatch Cheshire West and the way in which it conducts its business. Anyone who is dissatisfied with any aspect of the service delivered by Healthwatch Cheshire West can make a complaint under Healthwatch Cheshire West complaints policy. We will treat both concerns and complaints in the same way.

This Policy does not cover:

  • Complaints or concerns about the NHS, which should be dealt with through the NHS complaints procedure
  • Complaints about the provision of social care services which should be dealt with by Cheshire West and Chester Council.

In the first instance we would encourage you to raise a concern, or complaint, or to provide feedback on our service informally. Providing information or correcting misunderstandings or misconceptions at this early stage may enable the issue to be successfully resolved. You may do this by phoning the office on 0300 323 0006 or by emailing us at info@healthwatchcheshire.org.uk

Downloads

ICAS Leaflet

Self Help Information Pack

Writing an NHS Complaints Letter

What to expect from a resolution meeting

Obtaining Medical Records Information