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NHS Complaints on the increase new report reveals

Posted: 17th September 2012

Over 3000 written complaints were made each week to the NHS during 2011-12 a new report from the NHS Information Centre reveals. This is an 8% increase on the previous years figures, although this comparison is affected by 23 NHS Foundation Trusts providing data for 2011-12 but not for 2010-11. A direct comparison between those who reported data for both years show a rise of 1.3% (from 148,900 to 150,900).

The report covers complaints to Hospital and Community Health Services (HCHS) and to Family Health Services: General Practice (including dental services). Over 60% of HCHS complaints were made about hospital acute services (inpatient and outpatient). Nearly 50% (49,625) of HCHS complaints related to ‘all aspects of clinical treatment’ with a further 12,571 about ‘attitude of staff’ and 10,986 about ‘poor communication’.

The total number of written complaints about General Practice (including dental) health services has risen by 4,162, an 8.2% increase on the previous year. The general trend over the last 5 years has been an increase in complaints apart from last year which showed a slight decrease. Nearly 55% of complaints related to medical matters and nearly 15% were about dental services.

You can read more analysis, including a breakdown by Strategic Health Authority region and organisation here.  

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