Complaints and Concerns
If you are not happy with any aspect of our care or healthcare services, please ask to speak to a senior member of staff or the ward or department manager who will make every effort to help you and resolve your concern. If you do not reach a satisfactory conclusion, matrons are also available to speak to between 7.30am and 8.00pm Monday to Friday. If you need to speak to someone about your concern outside these hours, a senior nurse or hospital site manager is always available. Please ask staff to contact switchboard on your behalf to put you in touch with the senior person on duty.
The Trust’s Complaints Handling policy is available here:Complaint Handling Policy May 2017
If you still wish or would prefer to make a formal complaint, please contact:
Bridget Fletcher (Chief Executive)
Airedale NHS Foundation Trust
Airedale General Hospital
Or you can telephone 01535 294019 for advice.
Alternatively the complaints manager, Helen Barrow, will be happy to discuss your complaint with you in person. She can be contacted on telephone: 01535 294015 or email: email@example.com
We assure you that by raising a concern with the Trust it will not adversely affect your ongoing care or that of the patient about whom you are raising concerns.
Whoever investigates your complaint will be careful to ensure that any information about you is kept strictly confidential. The allocated investigator will be an employee of the Trust who works at a senior level within the organisation and will not have been involved in the direct care and treatment of the patient.
In the circumstance where you received your NHS care and treatment in a none NHS facility on behalf of Airedale NHS Foundation Trust then your concern will be dealt with by Airedale NHS Foundation Trust. Therefore we request you contact us via the details provided.
Independent Health Complaints Advocacy Service (for North Yorkshire patients only)
Post: North Yorkshire NHS Complaints Advocacy Service, 4 Devonshire Court, Green Lane Trading Estate, Clifton, York, YO30 5PQ
Telephone: 0300 012 4212
We are open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm. Outside these hours you can leave us a message and your contact details and we will get back to you.
Fax: 01924 43844
Frequently Asked Questions
Who can complain?
Anyone who is receiving or has received NHS treatment or services can complain. If you are unable to do so yourself then someone else (usually a close relative or friend) can complain for you. You may be asked to confirm that your relative or friend has your permission to pursue a problem on your behalf, especially if it involved confidential information about yourself or your treatment.
When should I complain?
It is best to raise your concern as soon as possible after the problem occurs. The NHS complaints procedure specifies time limits for making a formal complaint. The complaint should be made:
- within six months of the event; or
- within six months of you realising that you have something to complain about, provided this is not more than twelve months after the event itself.
There are some circumstances beyond these time limits where we may agree to investigate your concerns.
What we will do?
- try and speak with you within three days of receipt of your letter to discuss how to proceed with the complaint
- send you an acknowledgement letter
- investigate all issues raised by your complaint
- aim to provide you with a full written explanation, verbal information, or meet with you and respond to your complaint within the time scale agreed with you
- inform you if more time is needed
- share where lessons have been learnt with you
Often a telephone conversation or a meeting can go a long way towards a quick resolution of problems.
How will we respond to your complaint?
We are committed to:
- responding directly and quickly
- ensuring everyone is treated equally
- responding with respect, fairness and confidentiality
- making every effort to resolve your complaint
- ensuring that you will continue to receive high standards of care from our hospital
- identifying needed improvements in our services
- a culture of openness
If you require your response translated into another language or made available in an alternative format, please let us know and we will do our very best to help you.
If you do not feel satisfied with your response?
Please contact us as soon as possible. We will make every effort to resolve the complaint to your satisfaction. This may involve a meeting or further investigation and another written response.
What if you are still unhappy?
If you are still dissatisfied you can ask the Health Service Commissioner (the Ombudsman) to investigate your case. The Ombudsman is completely independent of both the NHS and the Government and investigates complaints not only about NHS services, but also how the complaints procedure is working. The Ombudsman is not obliged to investigate every complaint submitted and will not generally take on a case unless it has been through the full NHS complaints procedure. Their service is free and is independent of government. You can complain to them online here or by calling 0345 015 4033, you can also call this number if you need help completing the form or any other advice about the services Monday to Friday 8.30am – 5.30pm.
This also applies to cases that are being dealt with by the courts. You may also contact the Care Quality Commission in order to inform them of concerns you may have about the way in which your complaint has been processed and handled.
Will this procedure cost anything?
The whole of the Complaints Procedure, including the Ombudsman service is free.
To view the Trust’s complaint’s reports please click here.