The role of complaints in system oversight
The Mental Health Complaints Commissioner (MHCC) has taken
a range of approaches to safeguard and promote people’s rights and drive improvements in public mental health services. This paper details the role of complaints in system oversight, as well as the role of compliance actions, including investigations, in raising the standards of practice.
An example of an investigation carried out by the MHCC is shared
in detail, from making the complaint, to the systemic issues identified and recommendations proposed as a result of the investigation.
Additionally, this paper highlights what was learned from the MHCC’s 2022 stakeholder survey, particularly regarding the disparate perceptions of systemic change resulting from making complaints between those making complaints (consumers, carers and families) and service providers.
Finally, this paper concludes by arguing that some of the limitations the MHCC faces in system oversight will be mitigated given the strengthened powers and reach of the new Mental Health and Wellbeing Commission.
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