Complaints policy

We recognise that there are times when things go wrong. When this happens we want to respond to complaints swiftly and, where we can, try to put things right. We also value complaints for the feedback they provide so when patients and visitors offer criticism - or praise - we listen carefully. We review all the comments you make and we use that information to improve our services and facilities even further.

Whatever you want to say, your opinions and comments are important to us - good or bad.

If you want to complain

If you are unhappy with our facilities or service we want to know about it as soon as possible. We will then investigate the situation so that we can explain, apologise and take positive action where necessary. If you tell us as soon as the problem arises, it can often be sorted out straightaway. In many cases, the person looking after you may be able to solve a day-to-day query. Otherwise, the Hospital Director, Director of Clinical Services or a senior member of staff will be happy to help.

If you are not completely satisfied you can put your comments in writing. We take all comments and complaints seriously.

We always:

  • Pass on any praise to the people concerned
  • Handle complaints in complete confidence
  • Investigate impartially
  • Offer a clear and complete explanation

Write to us

The Hospital Director is responsible for the day-to-day running of the hospital and is in the best position to investigate any complaint thoroughly and promptly. You or your representative (with your consent), can make a complaint by emailing us at or writing a letter, stating:

  • The hospital and department/area where you were treated
  • The date on which you had reason to complain
  • Names of the consultant(s), nurses or other staff who were caring for you, if known
  • The type of treatment you received
  • Details of your complaint
  • Any further comments that you want to bring to our attention

Getting back to you

Acknowledgements will be sent within three working days of receiving the complaint. We will then reply in full as promptly as we can - usually within 20 working days.

If the investigation is still going on after 20 days we will write to explain the delay. In very complex cases, which may take more time, we will send you regular progress reports. We may suggest meeting you to talk through your issues and attempt to resolve them.

Independent internal review

If you are not happy with the response from the Hospital Director, private patients can escalate their complaint for internal review at Spire Healthcare's head office. The Hospital Director's letter will explain what to do and where to send your correspondence. One of our Divisional Directors will review your complaint and either confirm the decisions and actions taken by the Hospital Director or reach an alternative decision to help resolve the matter.

The review process for NHS patients is different. If you are unhappy with the response from the Hospital Director, NHS patients can escalate their complaint directly to the relevant Ombudsman.

In England, patients can contact the Parliamentary and Health Services Ombudsman on 0345 015 4033 or

In Scotland, patients can contact the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman on 0800 377 7330 or

In Wales, patients can contact the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales on 0300 790 0203 or

An independent external review

As a final resort, private patients have the right to take their complaint to independent external adjudication.

This process is run by the Independent Sector Complaints Adjudication Service (email or telephone 020 7536 6091) who only become involved once you have been through Spire Healthcare's complaints policy. If we have been unable to resolve your complaint, this process will be fully explained in a letter from the Divisional Director.

You may also wish to share your experience with the Care Quality Commission (CQC). Although they cannot look into complaints about health care or social care services, they would still like to hear from you if you are not happy about the care you receive. This is because they can use this information when they are looking at individual services in England to make sure that they are meeting important standards of quality and safety. To contact the Care Quality Commission call 03000 616161, email or visit the CQC website.

Our hospitals in Scotland are regulated by Healthcare Improvement Scotland.

Our hospitals in Wales are regulated by the Healthcare Inspectorate Wales.