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Complaints and compliments

Complaints and Compliments

  • How to get in touch with us

    Email us Online feedback form

    The Royal Children’s Hospital (RCH) is committed to providing great care everywhere. It’s part of our strategic plan. We aim to provide our patients and their families with the best care possible.

    The RCH welcomes feedback – both positive and negative – as a way to help continually improve the services we provide. We’d love to know what you think.

    Share a compliment

    You may have had a wonderful experience and wish to share it with us by providing a compliment. All of our staff members appreciate knowing when their efforts to provide great care have been noticed.

    To provide a compliment, click on the feedback button and complete the form. Your feedback will be send to the relevant department.

    Make a complaint

    At times, your experience at the RCH may not meet your expectations. We encourage you to let us know. When you raise your concerns with us, we find out where we can improve and we can perform better in the future for your next experience, as well as for other patients and their families, too.

    If the patient is old enough? We warmly welcome feedback from children and young people. Parents and guardians are encouraged to support their child to provide feedback, too. Family members who are not our patient’s guardian, and community members, too, are welcome to provide feedback – however, privacy laws prevent the RCH from discussing details with anyone other than the child’s parent or guardian.

    Please note, feedback is most effective when it is received in an appropriate and non-intimidating or threatening manner. The RCH will not tolerate aggression towards staff in either verbal or written form.

    How do I make a complaint?

    Speak to someone straight away:

    • Wherever possible, the RCH encourages you to discuss your concerns directly with the person, ward or department. It is often the quickest and easiest way to resolve the issue
    • Speaking to the treating nurse, medical team or nurse unit manager (NUM) in the first instance usually gets the quickest result 

    Act quickly:

    • Speaking with someone as soon as an issue arises may mean that instant adjustments can be made and your child’s experience could be immediately improved
    • Problems that can be resolved at the time they occur have the best outcomes for both parties

    Providing details:

    • Explain the issues thoroughly. Dot points help to convey your information concisely
    • The order in which issues occurred is very helpful to know, so if possible provide the details of times and dates and include any other relevant details (i.e. letters, meetings, appointments)
    • Explain what you believe would be a satisfactory outcome for your feedback

    The Consumer Liaison Officer 

    Should you feel your concerns have not been satisfactorily addressed, please contact the Consumer Liaison Officer (CLO) via the online consumer feedback form (blue button) above. The CLO can also be contacted via email, by completing the consumer feedback form available in paper copy on the ward or telephone (9345 5676). The office operates between 9am-4pm on weekdays. If your call is not answered, please leave a detailed message and a CLO will return your call as soon as possible. When leaving a message please provide us with a name, contact number and a brief description of your concern.

    What happens with my feedback?

    The CLO will forward your complaint to the most appropriate person to investigate and follow up on the concerns you have raised. This might include:

    • discussing your complaint with the staff members who are best able to address your concerns
    • responding to your complaint, sometimes in the form of a letter of explanation or apology
    • arranging for you to meet with relevant staff to further understand your concerns
    • informing you about the actions the hospital has taken for improvement as a result of your feedback

    The CLO monitors the progress of all complaints and can assist in following up the relevant department to address your concerns. The CLO will keep you up-to-date about the progress of your complaint.

    Will my child’s care be affected if I make a complaint?

    Absolutely not. Complaints are not stored with the patient’s medical record, they are recorded in a separate complaints management system. Your complaint will not adversely affect your child’s treatment or care in the hospital in any way. You and your child will not be treated unfairly, judged or experience retribution as a result of making a complaint

    When can I expect to receive a resolution?

    The RCH aims to provide you with a resolution to your feedback within 30 business days. This timeframe may be longer if the issues are complex, or if multiple departments need to respond. The RCH invites you to contact the CLO via email clo@rch.org.au or by calling 9345 5676 for an update on the progress of resolving your complaint.

    I want to remain anonymous, is this possible?

    Anonymous feedback is welcome; you do not need to provide your name or your child's name. However, without these details, we will not be able to inform you about the improvements we were able to make as a result of your feedback.

    Privacy and confidentiality

    The information we collect to address your complaint will only be used for the purpose of resolving the complaint and providing feedback to you. If you would like to read more about our privacy policy

    Consent

    If you are the legal guardian of the child who is the subject of your complaint, the RCH can correspond with you and provide information related to your complaint. However, if you are NOT the legal guardian, we will require consent to provide you with information regarding the child. The CLO will make contact with the legal guardian to seek consent to share information. The CLO is bound by any Court Orders, legal or privacy requirements in place regarding the child’s care or your complaint.

    Requesting an interpreter/assistance

    Should you require an interpreter to assist in lodging or receiving responses about your complaint, please make the CLO aware and a translator can be arranged. If you need assistance in lodging your complaint, the CLO can assist you over the phone to summarise your complaint and ensure that it is sent to the correct department.

    What if I am not satisfied with the outcome?

    Once the RCH has made a formal response, you can further pursue your complaint if you feel that your feedback has not been dealt with to your satisfaction. Your options include:

    • The Health Complaints Commissioner is an independent statutory authority established to receive and resolve complaints about a health service providers. This is a free and confidential service.
      Telephone 1300 582 113. Website https://hcc.vic.gov.au
    • The Mental Health Complaints Commissioner is an independent, specialist body under the Mental Health Act 2014 (the Act) to safeguard rights, resolve complaints about Victorian public mental health services and recommend improvements.
      Telephone 1800 246 054. Website www.mhcc.vic.gov.au 
    • The Disability Services Commissioner is an independent oversight body resolving complaints and promoting the right of people with a disability to be free from abuse.
      Telephone 1800 677 342. Website https://odsc.vic.gov.au
    • The NDIS Quality and Safeguarding Commission is an independent agency established to improve the quality and safety of NDIS supports and services NDIScommission.gov.au.

    Patient Advocacy

    Patient Advocate can be accessed by external services such as Patient Advocates Australia.

    Patients’ Rights

    Health Care organisations are required to provide a statement regarding patient rights. At the RCH we use The Australian Charter of Healthcare Rights. To access this information in other  languages.