New guidance on better handling of complaints has been issued for care providers.
Launched by the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman and Healthwatch England, the new single complaints statement helps adult social care providers set out what service users, their families and representatives can expect when making a complaint.
Michael King, Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman said: “I want to encourage all service providers – whether independent or council run – to adopt the single complaints statements into their own complaints policies, and highlight them in any information they give to service users, their families and representatives.
“We know the complaints system can be a real labyrinth for people to navigate, but we also know many councils and care providers have excellent procedures which help guide people through the system, and signpost them to us at the end.
“Our investigations have shown the best councils and care providers have open and reflective complaints procedures, with a learning attitude at the heart of them. These new complaints statements should be a useful tool for all providers and their complaints systems.”
Born out of the Quality Matters initiative, which aims to improve the quality and consistency of adult social care provision across the country, the statement offers a simple bulleted guide for each stage of the complaints process.
The government recognised the value of the new single complaints statement in supporting a more consistent understanding of handling of complaints as part of its recent response to the CMA market study on care homes.
Launched alongside the complaints statement is a second document created for service users to help them better understand the complaints process. An accessible ‘EasyRead’ version is also available.
The documents can be downloaded from the Ombudsman’s website at https://www.lgo.org.uk/adult-social-care/adult-social-care-resources