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People find the system complex and confusing and need more information

People find the system complex and confusing

“Reporting complaints is a nightmare as there are so many agencies and providers.”

The complaints system remains utterly bewildering and people find navigating it time-consuming and exhausting.

There are over 70 different kinds of organisations involved in handling complaints, including service providers, commissioners, regulatory and bodies, and ombudsmen.

Just 14 per cent of those who complained were clearly told what to expect from the process. Only 1 in 5 people said they had to make their complaint just once to one person or organisation.

Jeanette’s experience

Jeanette became concerned that the care home her mother was living in did not provide the facilities she needed to have a bath. After raising the concern with the care home and receiving only excuses, she did not know where to go next, and resorted to a ‘scatter-gun’ approach to getting the complaint resolved. Going to the press eventually prompted a response from the council, but Jeanette told us: “Reporting complaints is a nightmare as there are so many agencies and providers.”


People are not given the information they need to complain

“It wasn’t easy to find out who to complaint to as no information was provided regarding the complaints/appeals process.”

Too often, people simply lack the information they need to complain. People also told us that members of staff were often unable to tell them how to complain, resulting in people having to try to find out for themselves.

According to our August 2014 YouGov survey, a staggering two thirds of people who experienced or witnessed poor care in the last two years did not complain about it. 1 in 4 (23%) said this was because they did not know who to complain to.

Esther’s experience

Esther wanted to complain about problems in funding for her continuing healthcare: “It wasn’t easy to find out who to complaint to as no information was provided regarding the complaints/appeals process.”

Complaints > Problems > People find the system complex and confusing and need more information