HCC can help consumers to seek the most appropriate options to resolve their complaints about the health care they have received.
Recognising that complaints about health services are best resolved by the parties concerned, an HCC advocate will provide advice, information, referral, support and advocacy as follows –
- An HCC advocate can assist consumers to clarify and define the issues of their complaint. We aim to ensure the matter is dealt with by the most appropriate staff of the health service.
- Access to our services is affordable. We provide a toll-free telephone number for consumers outside the metropolitan area and a reply-paid postal facility for all consumers.
- For a small fee (if affordable), consumers may use our photocopier for documents and notes relating to a complaint.
- HCC can provide consumers with a sample complaint letter to show consumers how to draft their own complaint letters to a health service. We can also assist with Freedom of Information applications. Whatever action we take, we will consult with the consumer at every stage.
- HCC can assist individuals or groups of consumers to formulate a complaint if they are unable to do so themselves.
- HCC will assist with complaints that identify a systemic problem in the health system.
- An HCC advocate can attend meetings with consumers, either as an advocate or as an independent third party. The latter role is a useful one of witness and support. The HCC representative observes the interaction between consumer and provider and, by being present, provides moral support to the consumer.
- If HCC becomes a participant in such meetings, it will be to assist the consumer to achieve the agreed objectives of the meeting.