Reviews and complaints in Wales

People's circumstances change, so the services they receive should be reviewed from time to time. If the person with dementia or their carer has a complaint relating to any part of the process, it is best to try to resolve it with the person they have contact with, such as the assessor or social worker.

Reviews

People's circumstances change, so the services they receive should be reviewed from time to time. Local authorities do this through review meetings to see whether the needs of the person with dementia or the carer have changed. There are different routes to getting a review:

  • A planned review is where the date of the review was set out in the initial care plan.
  • An unplanned review is normally the result of a change in circumstances, eg a fall or hospital admission.
  • A requested review is where the person, their carer or a professional (eg their GP) requests a review. This may be due to a change in care needs, or where it is felt that different support is needed.

Where someone has been given a personal budget by the local authority, there should be a review within 6-8 weeks. This will not be as extensive as the original assessment.

The purpose is to ensure that the support is meeting their care needs and to check that there is no unmet need. It should also ensure that, if there are problems, they are dealt with quickly.

Complaints

If the person with dementia or their carer has a complaint relating to any part of the process, it is best to try to resolve it with the person they have contact with, such as the assessor or social worker. There may simply have been a breakdown in communication or a misunderstanding that can be easily put right. However, if this is not successful, the local authority will have a complaints procedure to follow. The local authority will explain how to use this. The complaints procedure might be useful if:

  • there are problems arranging an assessment
  • there is an unreasonably long wait for an assessment
  • the required services are not provided, or are unsatisfactory
  • there is a dispute about the amount of personal budget that is allocated
  • where someone is told that they are not eligible and they feel that they are.

If the local authority complaints procedure does not resolve the issue, someone can take their complaint to the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales (see 'Assessment for care and support in Wales - more resources '), but it may be helpful to talk to a local advice agency first, eg the Citizens Advice Bureau.

 

Further reading