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Data on written complaints in the NHS, 2016-17

Publication date: 09:30 September 14, 2017


The NHS complaints procedure is the statutorily based mechanism for dealing with complaints about NHS care and treatment and all NHS organisations in England are required to operate the procedure.

This collection is a count of written complaints made by (or on behalf of) patients, received between 1 April 2016 and 31 March 2017 covering both secondary and primary care (GP and Dental).

From 2015-16 the KO41a HCHS (Hospital & Community Health Service) collection has changed from an annual collection to quarterly, the levels of detail have also changed. As a result data for 2015-16 is classed as Experimental Statistics. Similarly from 2016-17 the KO41b (Primary care - GP and Dental) collection has changed its level of detail and content so data for this latest year is also classed as Experimental Statistics.

Also published on the same day is the 2017-18 Quarter 1 data for HCHS complaints, a link to this report is in shown below.

Key Facts

•The total number of all reported written complaints in 2016-17 was 208,415. This is the equivalent to 4,008 written complaints a week or 571 complaints per day.

•The total number of all HCHS (secondary care) written complaints was 117,836 in 2016-17. This is an increase of 1,656 (1.4 per cent) from last year (116,180).

•The total number of all reported Primary Care (GP and Dental) written complaints has increased by 8,020 (9.7 per cent) from 82,559 in 2015-16 to 90,579 in 2016-17.


Date Range: 01 April 2006 to 31 March 2017
Geographical coverage: England
Geographical granularity: NHS Trusts, Hospital Trusts, Ambulance Trusts, Community health services, Regional health body, Care Trusts, Hospital and Community Health Services, Mental Health Trusts, Regions, Clinical Commissioning Groups, Health Education England Region, GP practices

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