Complaints & Advocacy
Help making a complaint

Deciding to make a complaint?

Making a complaint can feel intimidating and scary, and you might be wondering whether it’s worth the time and effort. However, if you have problems with an NHS or social care service, you need to resolve this to get the care you need.


Knowing how to make a complaint

Making a complaint can be a daunting task, so knowing who you can complain to and what to do is essential.

We can help you. We’ve worked with Healthwatch England to produce straightforward advice to guide you through the process from knowing who to talk to, top tips on what to do and what you can expect from services in response. Our guidance also helps you find the local contacts you need to make a complaint about NHS and social care services in Dorset. Read our complaints advice


Please note:

  • We do not ourselves have powers to investigate individual formal complaints about NHS or social care services.
  • We cannot make a complaint to a service on your behalf.
  • We are not able to offer financial or legal advice.  That should always be sought from a trained specialist such as a solicitor or financial advisor.

Complaints advocacy services

Every area of England has an independent NHS complaints advocacy service funded by the local authority. They can help you make a complaint about an NHS service or work out what you want to achieve from a complaint.

In Dorset, you can get independent support with health complaints from The Advocacy People. Children and young people can get advice and support about social care services from National Youth Advocacy Services.

Patient Advice Liaison Service

Patient Advice Liaison Service (PALS) offers confidential advice, support and information on health matters. It provides a point of contact for patients, families and carers.

PALS do not investigate individual complaints but can give you general advice about the NHS complaints procedure.

Find out more and contact your nearest PALS

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