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Raising a Concern About a Service

Raising your concerns/complaints regarding Health and Social Care (HSC) Services with RQIA

One of the most important ways for RQIA to help ensure that care services improve is by listening to the people who use the services or have family and friends who avail of these services. 

During our inspections we collect the views of service users and their families/loved ones to help inform our assessment of the care being provided.  If you have concerns/complaints about a service, we are keen to hear from you. 

The information you provide will be assessed by an RQIA inspector, and we will take appropriate steps to follow up your concerns.  This will involve some but not necessarily all of the following stages:

  • Recording your concerns to help inform our understanding of the service: -this information will be reviewed by our inspector in advance of our next planned inspection
  • Speaking further with you regarding matters of clarity
  • Speaking to the service provider for further information, and to follow up the issues you have raised
  • Speaking to the Health and Social Care Trust (HSCT) to seek their knowledge of the service and the quality of service delivery
  • Carrying out a planned or unplanned inspection of the service to review the concerns you have raised
  • Providing feedback to you (where appropriate) following our review of the matters raised

If you wish to contact us regarding a concern about a service, you can:

  • Phone: RQIA's Guidance Team (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm): 028 9536 1990
  • Email: info@rqia.org.uk 
  • Post: The Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority, 9th Floor Riverside Tower, 5 Lanyon Place, Belfast, BT1 3BT

Making a Formal Complaint About a Service

An important way for you to support and encourage services to improve is by letting them know about your concern/complaint. This will offer the service the opportunity to review the matter and respond directly to you.  All services are required to have a complaints policy, and this is the first step outlined in the Health and Social Care (HSC) regional guidance to local resolution of concerns/complaints. If you have not already done so please ensure you have logged your concern with the service directly to enable local resolution. 

The Patient and Client Council (PCC) can provide you with free and independent advice and support to help you raise your concern/complaint. The PCC can be contacted by telephone at 0800 917 0222, email:  info.pcc@hscni.net ,or by visiting their website: www.patientclientcouncil.hscni.net

If you are not satisfied with the local resolution response from the service, you can raise your concern/complaint with your local HSC trust. The trust will review your concern/complaint with the service provider and provide you with feedback from the provider to ensure the matter is satisfactorily resolved.

For more information, visit the PCC’s website at: www.patientclientcouncil.hscni.net/making-a-complaint

What can I do if I am not satisfied with the service or trust response?

If you remain dissatisfied following support from the HSC trust, you can then bring your concerns/complaint to the Northern Ireland Public Services Ombudsman (NIPSO). NIPSO will undertake an independent review of your concern/complaint and also review how the service and the trust have undertaken to resolve your matters of concern.

For more information, visit NIPSO’s website: www.nipso.org.uk

For further help and advice on raising a concern or complaint about an independent service (e.g. care home or domiciliary care agency) or HSC service (e.g. hospital, mental health facility), RQIA has produced short guidance leaflets, which can be accessed by clicking the images below:

                    

Making a Complaint about RQIA

If you wish to make a complaint or provide feedback about RQIA, click here