Complain about an NHS service

Last updated: 18 February 2020

To complain about an NHS service – such as a hospital, GP or dentist – you should complain to the person or organisation. For example if it's a complaint about your doctor, you could complain to the surgery.

If you do not want to make a direct complaint or your complaint has not been resolved, contact your local NHS health board or special NHS board.

You cannot complain to an NHS board about private health care or anything you're taking legal action about.

Visit NHS inform for more information about NHS feedback, complaints and your rights. They explain the complaints handling procedure and when you'll get a response.

Help with complaints

For help and advice with complaints, contact your local Patient Advice & Support Service (PASS). The service is free, independent and confidential.

If you're unhappy with how the NHS handled your complaint

If you are unhappy with an NHS board's final decision, you can ask the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman (SPSO) to review your complaint.

The NHS board must tell you how to do this when they send you the final decision.

The SPSO is independent from the NHS and Scottish Government. It reviews complaints about most organisations providing public services in Scotland.