Complaints Information

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Please click on the links below to find more information regarding complaints:

 

What is Primary Care?

Primary care concerns primary health care services that are the ‘first point of call’ for members of the public. For example, GPs, walk-in centres, dentists, pharmacists and opticians.

What is Secondary Care?

Secondary Care is the care we receive in hospitals, clinics, care homes or even in our own home. It may be planned or unplanned emergency care / surgery. It can also include specialist care.

What is the difference between Primary & Secondary Care?

The majority of Primary Care takes a ‘generalist’-based approach, not specialised to any area. When specialist treatment/care is required, a referral will be completed by a Primary Care service to Secondary Care.

I have concerns about my local hospital, who should I inform?

Concerns can be raised with a variety of organisations:

  •  Hospitals are commissioned by a local area Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) to provide services and care for the population of their area. CCGs, therefore, are very interested in hearing the comments and feedback of patients and the public that use the service
  • Health Watch England are an independent consumer champion for health and social care in England. They ensure that the views and opinions of the service user are listened to and taken seriously
  • NHS Choices allows patients to leave feedback on its website regarding care and services received. This site is monitored by most hospitals and they also have an option to reply to messages written.

How do I voice my concerns?

Concerns regarding Secondary Care can be voiced with a variety of organisations through a number of methods. Most organisations will allow you to leave feedback in the form of e-mails, telephone calls and in writing. Contact details for individual organisations can be found on their website. 

If you want to inform SWBCCG of your concerns, you can contact us using the details below:

By phone: 0121-612 4110

By e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

By post: Customer Care Team,
Sandwell and West Birmingham CCG,
Kingston House, 4th Floor Rear,
438-450 High Street,
West Bromwich
B70 9LD

 

Will the information I give be acted upon?

All feedback regarding health care services and care received by its users will be taken very seriously. Any information provided by the public will be treated with the strictest of confidence and acted upon appropriately.

What is a complaint?

A complaint is an expression of dissatisfaction or grievance with a service you have received that requires an organisational response.

How can I complain?

A complaint can be made verbally, via telephone, in writing in the form a letter, or electronically in the form of an e-mail. Complaints can also be raised by Members of Parliament on behalf of their constituents. 
If you wish to raise a complaint through SWBCCG, you can contact us using the details below:

By phone: 0121-612 4110

By e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

By post: Customer Care Team,
Sandwell and West Birmingham CCG,
Kingston House, 4th Floor Rear,
438-450 High Street,
West Bromwich
B70 9LD

What is SWBCCG’s complaints process?

The complaints process includes acknowledging your complaint, acquiring consent to act on your behalf, and giving the service provider an appropriate timescale in which to investigate and respond to the matter. The process can be lengthy in some situations and may not always provide you with your desired outcome. When this is the case, further help can be provided to try to resolve your complaint locally, for example, arranging a meeting with the service provider. If you remain dissatisfied, however, you might wish to contact the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman, who will investigate the complaint further to ensure you have received a full response from the provider(s) concerned.

Will I have a dedicated complaints handler?

Yes. SWBCCG has a dedicated Customer Care Team. Once received, your complaint will be allocated to one member of the team, who will liaise with you and the service provider regarding your issues. You will receive a leaflet which explains who your dedicated complaints handler is with their working hours and contact details. While SWBCCG aims to provide this personal service to all service users that contact us, it may be necessary, during periods of staff leave, for another member of the team to assist for short periods of time.

Will the service provider know who gave the information?

Depending on the nature of the comments, and in order to ensure a thorough investigation, it may be necessary for your details to be disclosed to the provider. However, this will not be done without your written consent. In circumstances where information can be acted on without your personal details, the provider will not receive this information if you do not wish them to.

My treatment and care has been excellent, who should I thank?

The service that has provided the care and treatment would be very grateful to receive your compliments. Your comments can be shared directly with the service provider. Alternatively, the commissioning CCG would also like to receive positive feedback regarding patients’ experience(s). Any compliments made to SWBCCG will be noted and forwarded on to the service, along with an additional ‘thank you and congratulations’ from the Accountable Officer.

How should I let all those that cared for my during my illness know how grateful I am?

Staff that have impacted positively on your experience are always appreciative of positive comments and feedback regarding their standards of care and involvement with patients. Compliments and thank yous can be sent directly to the service concerned. Alternatively, SWBCCG would be happy to forward your comments on, with an additional compliment from the Accountable Officer.

Where can I get support?

The Independent Complaints Advocacy Service (ICAS) is able to support and help you throughout the complaints process. Its advocates are able to assist with writing letters, accompany you to meetings, and liaise with other professionals on your behalf. ICAS can be contacted by calling 0300 456 2370, by writing to them at POhWER PO Box 14043, Birmingham B6 9BL, or by e-mail at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Can I complain about my GP service to the CCG?

As GPs and their practices are Primary Care providers and members of the CCG organisation, complaints regarding their services should not be handled or investigated by the CCG itself. SWBCCG, however, is committed to helping you with your concerns and will be happy to help as much as possible. In certain circumstances your concerns/complaints will be signposted to the Local Area Team of NHS England.

Will I be treated fairly if I complain?

Yes. Any issues that are raised as complaints or concerns regarding a service are dealt with separately to your care and will not affect the standard of service and the care that you receive. SWBCCG takes all complaints very seriously and under no circumstances will it discriminate against the person who is complaining. It is important to us that your issues are resolved and that you continue to receive a good standard of care and communication.

What if I am unhappy with the way my complaint has been handled?

If you are not happy with the way the SWBCCG Customer Care Team is handling your complaint you can discuss this further with the SWBCCG Quality Manager. Your issues will then be processed in accordance with the Complaints Policy.

Should you have concerns regarding the way in which the service provider is handling the complaint, you can raise these with your SWBCCG complaints handler and request that further action is taken to resolve this. This may include meeting with both a provider representative and your SWBCCG complaint handler to discuss the matter.

What if I am not satisfied with the response?

If you remain unhappy with the response you have received from the service provider, you are able to request that a further response to your concerns is provided. Further resolution may include you meeting with a provider representative and your complaints handler. Should you still feel you don’t have the outcome you were hoping for, you can contact the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman.