A new survey has found that one in five older patients do not feel that they are treated with dignity and respect by NHS workers whilst in hospital but also feel unable to do anything about it.

Published by The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman and highlighted in ‘The Times’, the new survey reflects the views of over 600 members of the ‘Gransnet’ website.

It found that, although 35% said that there were occasions when they were concerned about an older relative’s care, over half felt that it was difficult to make a complaint about NHS treatment.

In his blog about these results, Rob Behrens, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman, commented that this is reflected in the fact that, out of 30,000 complaints received during 2016 – 2017, only 7% were from people over 75 years of age, despite the fact that this is a group which has a high level of usage of the NHS.

He further observed that an earlier report had identified not only that older people are unclear about how to complain to the NHS, but that they are also more likely to worry about what will happen if they do complain.

He wished to encourage people to register complaints, saying that ‘members of the public speaking up when things go wrong will help to improve the service in the long run and will prevent the same mistakes happening to someone else.’

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