Raising concerns and making an effective complaint
Raising concerns effectively or making an effective complaint takes preparation. Sometimes, it takes persistence.
It’s a good idea to write down the issues that are concerning you, or to talk about them with a friend, family member or advocate before you contact your service provider. That way you can be clear about what you want to happen.
Many people don’t want to raise concerns or complain – either because they don’t want to seem ‘difficult’ or because they fear reprisal. However, in the majority of cases, the provider will want to resolve any issues. And remember, you have the right to complain free of reprisal under the Charter of Aged Care Rights (see below).
Be polite to the person you talk to – they are there to help. If nobody gets back to you within a few days, call back. If the first person you talk to hasn’t helped, talk to somebody else.
If you are still not happy after raising your concerns, you can make a formal complaint to the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission (see below). You can do this yourself or ask an aged care advocate to support you.
How to make an effective complaint
Speaking up will help make the service better for you and others too. This video walks you through the steps and top tips to raising concerns and making an effective complaint, featuring advocate Gerard Dunlop. Click on the ‘CC’ button to turn on captions and the 'V' icon for full screen.
Documents and external links
Learn more about raising concerns and making an effective complaint. These documents and websites offer help, strategies, and practical information. Brief descriptions are provided for each document or link.
Checklist: How to raise concerns and make an effective complaint
When something’s not right, it’s okay
to speak up: raising concerns and complaints are part of an
organisation’s everyday business.
This OPAN checklist provides the information and questions you may need to raise a concern or make a complaint with your service provider. The checklist guides you through the process with clear suggestions and a strategy. You are encouraged to download and print this checklist when making your complaint, there is space to add your own notes and questions.
The A little yarn goes a long way brochure from the Aged Care Quality and Safety Commission has been developed to inform older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, and their friends and family, about the support available to help them resolve concerns about aged care services, and why it’s important to raise these concerns.
This resource is available in 7 different languages including: Alyawarra, Arrernte, English, Luritja, Pitjantjatjara, Torres Strait Creole and Warlpiri.
There are different ways to make a complaint, depending on what the issue is.
You have the right to raise your concerns about the information, service or care you receive from
My Aged Care, your assessor or service provider.