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How we use Complaints to improve Patient Experience and Safety

Easy read information

This page explains how the Trust uses complaints to make patient experience better and improve safety. It also contains information about the number of complaints and the outcomes of each.

How we use complaints to improve patient experience and safety

Following the inquiry into patient care at Mid Staffordshire NHS Foundation Trust, Robert Francis recommended that NHS trusts should publish information about upheld complaints on their website. As part of our commitment to share information and improve learning, we will publish a summary of upheld complaints every quarter on our website.

How we record outcomes and take action

We investigate all complaints and if we identify there is substantive evidence to support the complaint then we will record the outcome as ‘upheld’.

If evidence supports some of the issues raised we will record this as ‘partially upheld’.

Where there is no evidence to support it, the complaint is recorded as ‘not upheld’.

It is the responsibility of the Complaints Department to identify any trends or themes within particular services to see what action can be taken by the trust to prevent the same issues recurring in the future.

2017/18 Data

The Trust has received to date 263 complaints from service users, relatives and carers (recorded at 31 Dec 2017)

Q1 (April – June 2017) 90 complaints, 5 withdrawn.


Number of complaints Upheld: 37

Number of Complaints Partially Upheld: 13

Number of Complaints Not Upheld: 35

Top Trends for Upheld or Partially Upheld Complaints:

Our top 3 causes for complaints this quarter were in relation to:

  • access to treatment and medications
  • communication failures
  • staff values and behaviours

These account for 48% of our complaints

Q2 (July – August 2017) 82 Complaints, 1 referred on

Number of complaints Upheld: 28

Number of Complaints Partially Upheld: 21

Number of Complaints Not Upheld: 32

Top Trends for Upheld or Partially Upheld Complaints:

Our top 3 causes for complaints this quarter were in relation to:

  • failures in delivery of patient care
  • access to treatment or medication
  • access to or delays at appointments

These account for 59% of our complaints

Q3 (September - December 2017) 69 Complaints, 2 withdrawn

Number of complaints Upheld: 28

Number of Complaints Partially Upheld: 12

Number of Complaints Not Upheld: 27

Top Trends:

Our top 3 causes for complaints this quarter were in relation to:

  • failure in communication
  • access to treatment or medication
  • staff values and behaviours

These account for 70% of our complaints

Upheld complaints outcomes (28)

Q4 (January – March 2018)

Number of complaints Upheld: 19

Number of Complaints Partially Upheld: 21

Number of Complaints Not Upheld: 30

Top Trends:

Our top 3 causes for complaints this quarter were in relation to:

  • Patient Care
  • Failure in communications
  • Staff Values and Behaviours

These account for 60% of our complaints