Complain, Comment or Compliment

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How we deal with complaints

We take all complaints seriously and seek to act swiftly to resolve problems if they arise.

If you are unhappy with the treatment or service you have received from High Weald Lewes Havens CCG, you are entitled to make a complaint, have it considered, and receive a response from us.

The NHS complaints procedure covers complaints made by a person about any matter connected with the provision of NHS services by NHS organisations. 

You can find more information in our Complaints Policy.

Who can complain?

Anyone can make a complaint including

  • A patient
  • Someone acting on behalf of the patient with their written consent
  • Anyone affected by the actions of an NHS body.

Complaints about a primary care service

For information and comments about services funded by NHS England, please visit the NHS England website. The services they fund include:

  • GP Practices
  • Pharmacies
  • NHS opticians
  • NHS dental services
  • Health services for people in prisons and other custodial settings (adult prisons, young offender institutions, juvenile prisons, secure children's homes, secure training centres, immigration removal centres, police custody suites)
  • Health services for members of the armed forces and their families
  • Specialised and highly specialised NHS services

Need help to complain?

If you need any help from an independent body you may wish to contact the Independent Complaints Advocacy Service. Locally this service is provided by Support, Empower, Advocate,Promote (SEAP)

They can support you and represent your views when making a complaint.

What is the time limit for making a complaint?

You should normally complain within 12 months of the event(s) concerned or within 12 months of becoming aware that you have something to complain about. Complaints managers in NHS organisations have discretion to waive this time limit if there are good reasons why you could not complain earlier.

To whom should I complain initially?

Local resolution aims to resolve complaints quickly and as close to the source of the complaint as possible, using the most appropriate means. You can raise your concerns immediately by speaking to a member of staff who may be able to resolve your concerns without the need to make a more formal complaint.

However, if you want to continue with a formal complaint you can do this by telephone, email or letter to the Complaints Team.

Call: 01273 403583

If you make your complaint orally, a written record will be made. You will be sent a copy as acknowledgement and asked to contact us if you wish to make any amendments. To help us deal with your complaint effectively, please provide the following information when you contact us:

  • Your name, address and telephone number
  • The patient’s name and contact details name if you are complaining on behalf of someone else (if this is the case, you will be asked to complete a consent form)
  • Full details of the complaint
  • Where and when the incident took place that you are complaining about
  • What you have already done about your complaint, if anything
  • What you expect to happen as a result of your complaint
 Please note that in order for us to investigate your complaint thoroughly, it may be necessary for us to share details of the incident in question with other NHS organisations. If you would prefer us not to do this please make us aware when you first contact us.

What happens next?

We will acknowledge your complaint within 3 working days. It will then be passed to one of our trained investigating managers to carry out an investigation.

This process may involve: 

  • Meeting or speaking with one of our trained investigating managers to gain your personal view of the issues you have raised.
  • Accessing your records (with your consent) and disclosing relevant information to us
  • Using your information for other purposes, such as monitoring the complaints process or improving service quality. Where possible, only anonymous information will be used. If identifiable data is needed for other purposes, then your consent will be obtained.

Once the investigation has been completed, you will receive our response, including any improvements that have been, or will be made, as a result of your complaint.

Whenever possible this will be within 25 working days; if there is going to be a delay we will let you know and explain the reasons why.

Please be assured that your future care and treatment will not be affected in any way because you have made your concerns known to us.

The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

If you are dissatisfied with the response, you have the right to refer your complaint to the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman.

Call: 03450 154033 or send a text to their 'call back' service: 07624 813 005, with your name and mobile number.
Textphone (Minicom): 0300 614298.
Write to: Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman, Millbank, London SW1P 4QP


If you are experiencing issues with your healthcare which you would like resolved, but are not making a complaint, you can contact Healthwatch. This is an independent organisation which helps local people by assisting them when they have concerns about healthcare services such as GPs, dental surgeons, pharmacists and opticians. Healthwatch can also help patients to make informed choices about their health and wellbeing.

Call: 03331 014007
Write to: Healthwatch East Sussex, Freepost RTTT-BYBX-KCEY, Healthwatch East Sussex, Greencoat House, 32 St Leonards Road, Eastbourne, East Sussex, BN21 3UT

Care Opinion

Care Opinion (formerly Patient Opinion) was founded in 2005 and since then has grown to be the UK's leading independent non-profit feedback platform for health services. Care Opinion is about honest and meaningful conversations between patients and health services.

High Weald Lewes Havens Clinical Commissioning Group takes all feedback and complaints seriously, and we recognise this an important mechanism by which we can improve the services we offer. 

Part of this process will involve feeding back directly to Practices and Providers to ensure we are working together to provide the best possible healthcare for the local population.