Feedback and Complaints

Hearing feedback from consumers is essential for continuing improvement of health care services.

Feedback and Complaints

Have you or a family member experienced unsatisfactory health care? If so, providing feedback or making a complaint can be an important step in ensuring your voice is heard, and that improvements can be made for future health care users.There are a number of ways you can provide feedback or lodge a complaint.

Channels for providing feedback and making complaints

If you wish to provide feedback or make a complaint, the first place to begin is locally, by contacting the health service where the care was received. Health care providers have a vested interest in hearing feedback from those who have used their services, as it is an important part of their quality control processes. If the issue is resolved by the health care provider, this is often the most satisfactory experience for consumers and their loved ones.

If the issue is not adequately resolved, consumers have a right to pursue resolution of their complaint through their independent, state-based health care complaints authority. In Victoria, it is the Health Complaints Commissioner (HCC). The HCC offers an impartial process focused on the consumer experience.

If your complaint relates specifically to mental health services, you may wish to contact The Mental Health Complaints Commissioner. The MHCC  is an independent voice working for positive change in Victoria’s mental health system.

There is also a national body which receives complaints (called ‘notifications’), which is the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA). Notifications can be made to AHPRA only concerning a registered health professional on issues of unprofessional conduct, health impairment or professional performance.

The most appropriate organisation will depend on the nature of your complaint and what you hope to get from your complaint. For example, if you are looking for an explanation about what happened, or an apology or compensation, the Health Complaints Commissioner deals with such matters.

If you are in doubt about how to proceed with a complaint, the best way is to discuss this with staff from the Health Complaints Commissioner.

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Here is a list of projects that we are currently working on with consumers and health organisations.

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