Do you wish to complain about the care or treatment you have had from the NHS or social services?

Advocacy Focus can help you to structure and place any complaint that you wish to make should you find yourself unhappy or negatively affected by your treatment or care.

NHS Complaints

We are trained to help you to use the NHS complaints process if you wish to complain about:

  • NHS hospitals
  • General Practitioners (GPs)
  • Ambulance services and paramedics
  • District nurses
  • Mental health services
  • Dentists (if they treat you as an NHS patient)
  • Pharmacists (if you had an NHS prescription)
  • Opticians (if the NHS pays for your eye tests and/or glasses)
  • NHS funded care (if the NHS paid for you to be treated at a private hospital or pays all or part of someone’s Care Home fees, for example).

Social Care Complaints

We can help you to make a complaint about your experience with:

  • Children and/or Adult Social Care Services
  • Social Service professionals, eg social workers
  • Social Service funded Care Homes

Advocacy Focus can help you in many ways, even if it is just giving you the confidence to voice your concern or by pointing you in the right direction of where to complain by using the self-help tools on our website.

Who can have help from an Independent Advocate?

Anyone can have the support of an Independent Advocate during a complaints process. You can make a complaint on someone else’s behalf, either with their written permission, or in the case that they have passed away.

You can make a complaint on behalf of someone who lacks mental capacity or on behalf of a child under 18 years old, if they are unable to complain themselves.

How can we help?

Advocacy Focus can support you at any stage of the complaints process. We offer the following resources:

Before making a complaint

Self-Help Guide: In many cases, people do not need an advocate to help them with a complaint, but may benefit from accessing simple to understand information to make things easier.  We have a downloadable self-help guide which includes information available about the NHS complaints process, how to make a complaint, writing an NHS complaints letter, and how to access medical records.

Attend a health and social care complaint drop in: If you do not know whether to make a complaint or not, we can help you decide what to do. We may suggest that there are other less formal ways of sorting out your concerns. At our drop in sessions we can support you to start the complaints process. See where your nearest drop in session is here.

Making a complaint

Your advocate can:

  • Provide a confidential and independent service for you to discuss your complaint with
  • Explore the different stages of the complaints process with you
  • Help you to format and compose any letters you wish to send in relation to your complaint
  • Assist you to prepare for and attend any resolution meetings you are asked to attend
  • Assist you to escalate your complaint if you are not happy with any responses that you receive

It is important to understand that your advocate cannot advise or influence your decisions in any way and that they are there to provide you with information and the possible options, not their own opinions. Support can be accessed over the telephone, email or by a face-to-face meeting with an advocate at our drop in’s and can be provided at any stage of the complaints process.

Following the complaint

At Advocacy Focus, if a complaint is not resolved in a way that you are happy with, we can help you to take your complaint to an Ombudsman, in the hope that the appropriate regulatory body will hold them to account for their actions.

Be your own Advocate!

We can also help you become your own advocate and become more confident to speak up for yourself. Download your self help guide below.

Drop In Sessions

We hold free drop in sessions around Lancashire for anyone wishing to make a complaint. These sessions will help you understand the complaints process and how we can support you.

To find out when and where our next sessions take place, view our latest events.

Get in Touch

  • To request a printed copy of the self-help complaints pack, and for further information about our supportive drop in sessions please email [email protected], alternatively you can speak to our friendly team on 0300 323 0965
  • To view our Easy Read version of Complaints Advocacy click here