Part 2: What if my rights have not been respected?
If you think any of your rights has not been respected or the NHS in Scotland is not meeting its commitments or targets, you can raise a concern or make a complaint.
- In the first instance, you should talk to a member of staff involved in your care to see if your concern can be sorted out immediately.
- If you do not want to do this, you can speak to the person in charge at the NHS organisation involved, or follow the NHS in Scotland complaints procedure. The leaflet Making a complaint about the NHS tells you how to do this - see Part 3
The independent Patient and Advice Support Service (PASS) can provide help and support at any stage. See Part 3
Some of the reasons why you may wish to raise a concern include:
- if you feel your right to access services has not been respected
- if you feel your right to be informed and involved in decisions has not been respected
- if you feel your right to confidentiality has not been respected
- if you feel your right to be treated with dignity and respect has not been respected
- if you feel your right to safe and effective care has not been respected, or
- if you feel your right to have a say about your care and have any concerns dealt with has not been respected.
If the NHS in Scotland has fully investigated your complaint and you are not satisfied with the response you get, you can take your complaint to the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman (SPSO). See Part 3.
You may be subject to legal action if:
- you are violent or aggressive towards staff or other patients, their carers and family members.
If you feel that the NHS in Scotland has not respected your rights and you have suffered physical or mental injury or harm as a result, you may have the right to take legal action or make a claim for compensation, depending on the individual circumstances.
Examples of this are if an NHS body in Scotland or health care professional:
- goes against their duty of care to a patient in providing treatment or other health care and causes loss, injury or damage (for example by providing care that is below a standard of reasonable care and skill, or by failing to get informed consent), or
- fails to comply with their obligations under the Data Protection Act 1998, causing loss, injury or damage.
If you wish to take legal action or make a claim for compensation, you should seek legal advice. A solicitor can help you do this.
Email: Patient Rights Team