If we can’t take your patient safety concern forward, or simply aren’t the right people to talk to, there are other organisations that you can contact.
If you have already made a local complaint and you aren’t satisfied with the investigation or response to your complaint by the hospital, trust or healthcare organisation, there are other organisations who can help you.
We’ve compiled a list of useful links and resources to access expertise as quickly as possible.
NHS England and NHS Improvement
Make a complaint
If you aren’t satisfied with the way your complaint about a primary care service such as your GP, dentist, optician or pharmacy services is being handled, you can make a complaint to NHS England and NHS Improvement.
he NHS England and NHS Improvement advocacy service is provided by an advocate who is independent of social services and the NHS. An advocate's role includes arguing your case and making sure the correct procedures are followed by your health and social care services. Find out more about advocacy services on the NHS website.
Clinical Commissioning Group
If you aren’t satisfied with the way your complaint about services such as hospital care, mental health services, out-of-hours and community services is being handled, you can make a complaint to your local clinical commissioning group (CCG). Find contact details for your local CCG on the NHS website.
Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman
The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) make final decisions on complaints that have not been resolved by the NHS in England, UK government departments and other public organisations. Visit the PHSO website.
Care Quality Commission
You can share information about poor experiences of care with the Care Quality Commission (CQC) on their website and they may use your information as the basis of a decision to make an inspection. They’re particularly interested in hearing from people who have already made a direct complaint to the hospital, trust or healthcare organisation. Find out more on the CQC website.
National Guardian’s Office (NHS staff only)
If you are a member of staff in the NHS in England and are concerned about a safety incident where you work, the National Guardian's Office at the CQC provides advice on the Freedom to Speak Up Guardian role and supports the Freedom to Speak Up Guardian network. The office also exercises its discretion to review cases referred to it where there is evidence that an NHS service has not responded appropriately to the safety concerns raised by its workers.
Protect (formerly Public Concern at Work), the whistleblowing charity, aims to stop harm by encouraging safe whistleblowing. They advise individuals with whistleblowing dilemmas at work and support organisations with their whistleblowing arrangements.
Action against Medical Accidents
Action against Medical Accidents (AvMA) is the UK charity for patient safety and justice. It provides free independent advice and support to people affected by medical accidents (lapses in patient safety) through a specialist helpline, written casework and inquest support services. AvMA works in partnership with health professionals, the NHS, government departments, lawyers and patients to improve patient safety and justice.
INQUEST is a small charity that provides free advice to people bereaved by a death in custody and detention and is entirely independent of government. The charity provides specialist advice on deaths in custody or detention, or involving state failures in England and Wales. This includes a death that has occurred in psychiatric care and cases that involve multi-agency failings and raise wider issues of state and corporate accountability.