Comments and Complaints


Making a complaint is one way that helps organisations to learn lessons from their mistakes and to prevent them from happening to anyone else.

How can I make a complaint?

You can make a complaint in writing, by email, over the telephone or in person. Your complaint should be made as soon as possible.  This should be within a year of the event. You can make a complaint on your own or on behalf of someone else if you have their permission.

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

As you know, the NHS is facing significant challenges due to coronavirus. NHS staff are working hard to maintain high quality care in hospitals, GP surgeries and other services. All NHS staff are focusing on patient care and supporting front line staff to deal with this emergency.

This will mean that there will be delays to responding to your complaint. This is because we need clinical and other staff to review your complaint and contribute to the investigation and they are currently supporting the NHS to respond to this virus.

We will try to respond to as many complaints as we can where we receive the clinical input required.

As NHS services respond to the impact of Coronavirus, some of them may not be able to take calls regarding your complaint but you can contact them via email.

Further information can be found on the NHS England’s website: https://www.england.nhs.uk/contact-us/complaint/complaining-to-nhse/information-for-public-frequently-asked-questions/

Who should I contact with my complaint?

This depends on which NHS service you want to make a complaint about:

Hospitals and Community Services

Newham University Hospital

Formal complaints should go to the central Barts Health complaints team on 0207 480 4776 or 0207 480 4719 or by email to bhnt.centralcomplaints@nhs.net. All details about making a complaint can be found on the Barts Health website.

PALS team on Tel: 020 7363 9292 or by email: nuhpals.bartshealth@nhs.net. All details for the PALS service can be found on the Barts Health website.

Mental Health and Community Services

If you need information, advice or support about mental health and community services such as a health centre, physiotherapy or podiatry service and don’t know where to turn, you can contact East London NHS Foundation Trust’s Patient and Advice Liaison Service (PALS) by email palsandcomplaints@eastlondon.nhs.uk or freephone: 0800 783 4839

Doctor (GP), dentist, pharmacist or optometrist

If you want to make a complaint or comment about a GP, dentist, pharmacist or optometrist, please contact the practice directly in the first instance.  If you are unable to resolve the issue, then contact the NHS England Customer Contact Centre on 0300 311 2233 or email england.contactus@nhs.net. You can also write to: NHS England, PO Box 16728, Redditch, B97 9PT.

NHS Newham CCG and the services it commissions

If you have a complaint relating to the way an NHS service has been commissioned, or you have been directly affected by a commissioning decision made by us, please contact the Patient Experience Team at North and East London Commissioning Alliance (NELCA). They can be contacted on 020 3688 1666 or by email:  ELHCP.complaints@nhs.net 

* NELCA - North East London Commissioning Alliance covers the following CCGs: City and Hackney, Newham, Tower Hamlets, Waltham Forest, Barking and Dagenham, Havering and Redbridge CCGs

Can I get help and support with making my complaint?

If you need support in making a complaint about a NHS service you can contact Healthwatch who provide a free and independent service that can help you with your complaint. 

Healthwatch

Newham Healthwatch provides an NHS Complaints Advocacy Service. It is a free and independent service for Newham residents that can help you  make a complaint about a National Health Service. 

The service is delivered by Mind in Tower Hamlets and Newham (MiTHN) on behalf of Healthwatch Newham. Contact details are: 

NHS Complaints Advocacy Service Newham
The Resource Centre, 200 Chargeable Lane
London, E13 8DW Call 020 3828 8245
or email advocacy@healthwatchnewham.co.uk 

Newham’s advocacy service 

Voiceability

This is a free and independent advocacy service provided by Voiceability for all residents that: 

  • would have substantial difficulty in being involved in their care and support processes such as assessments, care planning, reviews and safeguarding enquiries.
  • have no one else (carer, family or friend) who can support their involvement.

Voiceability provide the following help and support: 

  • Professional and generic advocacy
  • Independent Mental Health Advocacy (IMHA) 
  • Independent Advocacy under the Care Act 2014
  • Independent Mental Capacity Advocacy (IMCA)
  • Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS)  

Contact details for Voiceability are: 
Stratford Advice Arcade
107-109 The Grove,
Stratford London, E15 1HP

Call 020 3355 7142 or email newham@voiceability.org.

What will happen once I make my complaint?

Complaints will be dealt with in a manner that is proportional to the issues raised. Your complaint will be investigated and the NHS organisation responsible will aim to resolve the concerns and, where needed, will take action to prevent the incident from happening again.

Will my complaint remain confidential?

Your right to confidentiality will be respected throughout the investigation. However, there may be times when we need to share information without your consent, for example to protect children and vulnerable adults.

What if I am still not satisfied?

If you are unhappy with the response to your complaint you should contact the service directly to see if they can look into the case further. You also have the right to take your complaint to the Health Service Ombudsman. However, please note that the Ombudsman is currently not accepting any new complaints about the NHS because of the COVID-19 pandemic.  This is to help ensure the NHS can focus its resources on urgent healthcare. The Ombudsman will keep the situation under close and regular review. You can find out more information on the Ombudsman’s website www.ombudsman.org.uk

Once the situation is back to normal, there will be time limits for taking a complaint to the Ombudsman, although the Ombudsman can waive these time limits if it is perceived that there is good reason to do so. You can contact their helpline on 0345 015 4033 or phso.enquiries@ombudsman.org.uk

You can write to the Ombudsman at: The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman, Millbank Tower, Millbank, London SW1P 4QP.

Information for people with a learning disability, autistic people, families and carers

People with a learning disability, autism or both can find it harder than other people to give feedback, raise a concern or make a complaint.

It is your right to be able to do this and doing so can help to improve the care and support that you and other people get.

NHS England worked with Speakup Self-Advocacy and others to create booklets to help you give feedback, raise a concerns or make a complaint.

Ask Listen Do film 

This awareness raising film is for people with a learning disability, autistic people, families and carers that can help when giving feedback, raising a concern or making a complaint: