Once you have lodged your complaint, we  will consider your complaint and the best way to resolve it.

Typically, we will contact you to discuss your complaint and the issues you have raised. We will work with you to identify the key issues in your complaint and discuss the resolution process.

Some complaints can be resolved quickly over the phone. Others may need to be confirmed in writing. In more complex cases we may need to obtain copies of your medical records. What actions we take will depend on the nature and details of your complaint and the willingness of parties to participate in the process. The complaints resolution process may involve phone conversations, written communications such as letters and emails, meetings and/or a conciliation conference. We will keep you updated on the progress of your complaint.

If we cannot help you, we will let you know promptly – and we will explain why. We will advise you of any other options available for addressing your concerns. You can read more about our process here.

If your complaint is about a registered practitioner, we must notify the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA). AHPRA may request that we formally refer the complaint to them. In some circumstances, the HCC and AHPRA may deal with a complaint concurrently or the HCC may manage a complaint before or after it is addressed by AHPRA.

We have a Service Charter that explains what we can and cannot do, how we operate and how you can expect us to treat you. It also explains what we need from you when you are involved with our service. The Service Charter is our commitment to you.

We have clear guidelines that allow the public and health service providers to understand what we can and cannot do.

We can:

  • help resolve complaints about health services and the handling of health information,
  • investigate health service providers who pose a serious risk to the health, safety or welfare of the public,
  • monitor and review trends in complaints data and use this analysis to inform quality, improvement possibilities within health services and the health system,
  • provide a free, independent, and accessible alternative to legal proceedings,
  • educate consumers and health service providers about healthcare rights and responsibilities.

We are committed to helping Victorians with safe and ethical health care provision but there are some things we cannot do:

We cannot:

  • force health service providers to take part in the complaint resolution process,
  • always get agreement on the outcome a complainant wants,
  • discipline practitioners registered by a National Board with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (Ahpra),
  • act as an advocate, or take sides for one party or another,
  • provide legal advice or operate outside the legislation that governs us.

In all circumstances where you are involved with our service, we will do the following:

  • ensure our service is easily accessible,
  • explain our role and what we can and cannot do,
  • guide the public to organisations that may be able to help, if we cannot,
  • acknowledge written complaints within three (3) working days,
  • explain how we will handle each complaint and what will help to resolve it,
  • work with complainants to identify key issues of concern,
  • treat everyone with fairness and respect,

To find the full Service Charter, see below: