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Case Studies

Select a case study to find out more...

Kay's Story (not clients real name)

The client wished to complain about the poor treatment she received whilst undertaking an inpatient alcohol detox programme, the environment of the hospital, and about the poor treatment she observed of other patients on the ward.

Melchor's Story (not clients real name)

A young Filipino man, with limited English, was held under section in a Psychiatric Intensive Care Unit (PICU) in Oxford for nearly two years.

John's Story

John is an ex-army veteran who was detained  in a prison in Oxfordshire. He was very unhappy with the service he was receiving from the prison health care service and wanted advocacy support to help him challenge his treatment.

An Innocent Prisoner

Mr Barrass complained about the treatment his mother received in a care home and he wants his mother’s story to influence the way complaints are investigated and the way care homes are regulated.

Service used:

Simon's Story

The support of an Independent Mental Health Advocate helped Simon gain the confidence to self-advocate and secure his discharge from a medium secure unit.

Nicole's story

Nicole needed support with an Exceptional Funding Appeal to try and overturn her PCT's decision not to fund an out-of-county treatment package recommended by her consultant.

Francesca's story

Service used: Independent Health Complaints Advocacy (IHCA)

Francesca has been a paraplegic since she fractured her spine 40 years ago. The treatment and care she received at that time, in a Spinal Injuries Unit within an orthopaedic hospital, was focused, sensitive and of a very high standard. In 2009, she was admitted to a District General Hospital with acute cellulitis (her first admission to any hospital since her injury).  She was dismayed at the lack of awareness by hospital staff of the needs of Spinal Cord Injured (SCI) patients. By raising a complaint Francesca hoped the hospital would recognise the particular needs of patients like her, make changes to their procedures and improve their staff training.

When Francesca contacted us she had already written to the Trust and received a response she felt was unsatisfactory. Tucked in with the letter was a leaflet explaining about ICAS. Francesca decided that the support of an independent advocate would enable her to pursue her complaint. With ICAS’s help a Local Resolution meeting was set-up and a clear agenda was prepared in advance detailing the issues to be discussed.

The meeting went very well. However, it took over three months, with no communication from the hospital, for the meeting notes to be circulated. Francesca found this both unacceptable and insulting. It undermined the confidence she had felt after the Local Resolution meeting and highlighted the need to press harder for the hospital to put in place steps to ensure SCI patients receive appropriate care. In addition she realised the delay demonstrated the need for improvements to be made to the complaints process itself.

ICAS continued to support Francesca in compiling and submitting her concerns about the complaints process. This resulted in a further meeting where a number of improvements in complaints handling were agreed. With regard to her initial complaint, the hospital set-up a programme to strengthen their links with a local spinal injuries centre in order to incorporate better nursing practice, procedures and staff training.

Francesca said, “My advocate was professional, patient and persistent. Her knowledge of the system helped me think clearly and focus on what I wanted to say. She explained the choices I had throughout the complaints process. I would have found it daunting and much harder to continue without the valuable support of ICAS.”