In a perfect world, we would be 100 percent satisfied with the treatment and advice sought from medical professionals every time.
But we don't live in a perfect world. Medical mistakes happen more frequently than we expect.
These mistakes range from incompetence, poor judgement decision and unprofessional behaviour.
Don't settle for inferior treatment. Make a complaint about it.
Complaints don't just benefit you. They also help clean up the medical industry.
It's in the community's interest to complain as it reduces the likelihood that another person will experience the same appalling treatment.
(RELATED: [Free Resource] How to make a complaint to Queensland's Office of the Health Ombudsman - step by step video guide).
Making a complaint is an important way of weeding out and re-educating health providers who are unprofessional or incompetent.
The most common complaints from patients relate to:
A smaller number involve administrative matters like lack of access to medical records, long waiting times, rude staff and so on.
The first step is to notify your doctor that you were unhappy with the treatment.
Start immediately by making a phone call or writing a letter to the health service provider.
If the doctor is employed by a medical practice or hospital the complaint needs to be directed to that organisation.
Before you contact the health service provider, be clear about what issues and concerns you have.
You may want to write them down. It will help you clarify your concerns, and you will not forget to raise any of them.
In your letter or phone call provide the following details:
If your case is serious or your injuries severe, don’t delay in taking the next steps in your complaint.
Don’t hesitate to pursue your complaint vigorously. You and the rest of our community deserve the best medical treatment.
There are government bodies that have been put in place to regulate health provider that are unprofessional and incompetent.
Equally so, as patients in Australia, we have specific rights to safe health care that are legally protected. Breaching these rights entitles you to bring legal action against poor medical practitioners.
Don’t be shy. These avenues have been provided to you for a reason. Use them.
The next half of the series outlines how to make a formal complaint to the government bodies or take legal action.