What is the Patient Ombudsman?
What happens when you or someone you love has a bad experience in a hospital, long-term care home, or with home care?
We’re often at our most vulnerable when we’re seeking health care, and a negative experience can leave you feeling frustrated or hopeless, especially if you’ve complained and feel like nothing improved.
If you’ve tried resolving your concern with the health organization directly and feel you aren’t getting anywhere, we can help.
We’re here to help
Patient Ombudsman is an independent, impartial office established by the provincial government to receive, respond to and help resolve complaints from patients or caregivers about their care experiences with public hospitals, long-term care homes, and home and community care.
Patient Ombudsman is not a patient advocacy organization. We work with both sides – patients/caregivers and health care organizations – to find a fair resolution.
What do we mean by fair?
Before coming to Patient Ombudsman, you need to try to have your complaint addressed by the organization that you were dealing with. If you aren’t satisfied with the outcome, that’s where we come in. When we’re working to resolve a complaint, we use a set of principles that look at what was decided, how was it decided, and how people were treated. We often ask questions about how the health organisation came to its decision, and whether policies and procedures were properly followed.
How can we help?
Every complaint is different, and so are the possible resolutions.
A resolution could be an apology from the health organization, it could be a commitment to change a policy or process, or it could be fixing an issue to make sure it doesn’t happen to anyone else.
If your complaint is about treatment decisions made by a health care provider (such as a nurse or doctor), or about an organization that is outside of our jurisdiction (such as a retirement home or walk-in clinic) we can help direct you to the right organization that deals with those concerns.
In certain situations, Patient Ombudsman can also carry out investigations and make recommendations to health sector organizations based on the findings of the investigation.
Together, we can help make change in our health care system to ensure others have more positive health care experiences.
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