Millions of people are not raising concerns about their care but those that do see improvements, according to CQC research.
The research found that in the last five years almost 7 million people in England had concerns about their care but never raised them, with more than half (58%) regretting not having done so.
Ian Trenholm, Chief Executive at the CQC, said: “We know that when people raise a concern they have a genuine desire to improve the service for themselves and others. We also know that the majority of services really appreciate this feedback and make positive changes, as this new research shows.”
The most common reasons for not raising a concern were not knowing how (20%) or who (33%) to raise it with, not wanting to be seen as a ‘troublemaker’ (33%) and worries about not being taken seriously (28%). Over a third of people (37%) felt that nothing would change as a result.
However, when people did raise a concern or complaint, the majority (66%) found their issue was resolved quickly, it helped the service to improve and they were happy with the outcome.
The majority of people who did raise a concern or complaint were motivated by a desire to make sure that care improved for others. This included wanting to improve the care they, or a loved one, had received (61%) and improve care for everyone using the service (55%) with a smaller number also hoping for an apology or explanation (26%).
The main reasons given for raising, or wanting to raise a concern, were delays to a service or appointment, lack of information and poor patient care. Additionally, over a fifth said they have raised or wanted to raise concerns about the lack of communication between health and care services.
Judy Downey, chair and CEO of the Relatives & Residents Association, told CHP: “It is concerning that only 25% of the sample had ever even voiced their concerns (fewer than 7% had made a complaint). Of those who raised a concern/complaint or wanted to raise them: 44% were about delays, 43% about poor patient care, 40% about lack of information, 30% about lack of respect and 22.4% about poor communication between different services.”
The research was published as part of the CQC’s ‘Declare Your Care’ campaign, which is designed to encourage people to share their experiences of care to help improve quality standards.
People can share their experiences of care by visiting: www.cqc.org.uk/sye