Our new, streamlined system for investigating complaints against registered care services, including care homes, care at home services and a wide range of social care services, begins today.

It will streamline the time it takes to rule on complaints, reduce the numbers of steps in the process and make the results of complaint investigations easier to understand.

We have developed the new system to bring us into line with Scottish Public Services Ombudsman’s guidance.

We have made a broad range of improvements to the current system.

  • We aim to investigate and rule on complaints within 20 working days, reduced from the previous 28 working days limit (we will notify people of any extensions required by more complex cases).
  • A simpler, three-stage process will be less bureaucratic and easier for all complainants to understand.
  • A simpler set of possible outcomes from complaints, with all complaints either ‘upheld’ or ‘not upheld’. It will no longer be possible for a complaint to be ‘partially upheld'.
  • A new ‘error response’ process will give those services that are the subject of a complaint the opportunity to challenge any points of factual accuracy before a complaint is formally resolved.

We will retain the key strengths of the existing approach, including the ability to make anonymous complaints and the UK’s only telephone line for raising concerns and making complaints.

Our new system, including the new, shorter time limits, begins today, with changes to the way information is presented and published made over the coming months.

Commenting on the new approach, Care Inspectorate Director Gill Ottley, said:

"We want everyone, from members of the public and people who use services, to staff and carers, to feel they can raise any concerns they have about the quality of services and know they will be investigated thoroughly and as speedily as possible."

To find out more, visit our Complaints pages.