Phone calls from NHS trusts

Susan Wilkinson made this Freedom of Information request to Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

This request has been closed to new correspondence from the public body. Contact us if you think it ought be re-opened.

Waiting for an internal review by Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman of their handling of this request.

Dear Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman,

Please can you tell me if there is any Policy/Procedure document which refers to Ombudsman staff giving advice to NHS trust complaints staff regarding cases which have not been referred to the PHSO.

Yours faithfully,

Susan Wilkinson

foiofficer, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

Thank you for your e-mail to the Parliamentary and Health Service
Ombudsman. This return e-mail shows that we have received your
correspondence.

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All email communications with PHSO pass through the Government Secure
Intranet, and may be automatically logged, monitored and/or recorded for
legal purposes.
The MessageLabs Anti Virus Service is the first managed service to achieve
the CSIA Claims Tested Mark (CCTM Certificate Number 2006/04/0007), the UK
Government quality mark initiative for information security products and
services. For more information about this please visit www.cctmark.gov.uk

Gasston Aimee, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

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By email
Susan Wilkinson

22 October 2013

Dear Ms Wilkinson

Your information request (FDN-174787)

Further to your email of 30 September 2013, I am writing in response to your information request.

In your email, you asked ‘Please can you tell me if there is any Policy/Procedure document which refers to Ombudsman staff giving advice to NHS trust complaints staff regarding cases which have not been referred to PHSO’.

As the sizes of the files I need to send you are large, I will need to send them in zip format across two separate emails. If you have problems accessing these files, please let us know by emailing us at [email address] and providing your home address and we will send these documents to you by post.

Please find attached (to the second email I am sending) a copy of the casework policy and guidance currently in use by our caseworkers. Please note that this guidance is interim as we move to new ways of working (as detailed in our new strategy, More Impact for More People, available online at: www.ombudsman.org.uk/about-us/more-impac.... I have also attached (to this email) the casework policy and guidance which was in use prior to April 2013, and was used by caseworkers before the interim policy and guidance was introduced. For completeness, I have also attached a Customer Service Officer handbook (to my second email). Although none of this guidance specifically addresses the situation you describe, I hope it is helpful.

Please note that this guidance is not intended to, and cannot, prescribe the actions or processes to be followed in all areas of casework. Many areas of PHSO casework involve the use of discretion and judgment depending on the circumstances of individual cases. Also, the wide scope of the Ombudsman’s jurisdiction means that the guidance cannot hope to cover all eventualities. PHSO’s communication with bodies within her jurisdiction is ultimately governed by legislation – either the Health Service Commissioners Act 1993 (for complaints about NHS organisations) or the Parliamentary Commissioner Act 1967 (for complaints about government organisations). This legislation is available online at: www.legislation.gov.uk

I hope that this information is useful.

Yours sincerely

Aimee Gasston
Freedom of Information/Data Protection Officer Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman
W: www.ombudsman.org.uk

Please email the FOI/DP team at: [email address]

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foiofficer, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

1 Attachment

2/2

Aimee Gasston
Freedom of Information / Data Protection Officer
Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

W: www.ombudsman.org.uk

Please email the FOI/DP team at: [email address]

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Susan Wilkinson left an annotation ()

The short answer that Ms Gaston avoids is NO. There is no reference to this practice because, I believe, it doesn't happen and they don't want to admit that because they know Michale Wilson, CEO of East Surrey Hospital has claimed to have acted on their advice.

Dear Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman's handling of my FOI request 'Phone calls from NHS trusts'.

WHY DID SHE NOT SAY “it is not the Ombudsman's role to provide advice to NHS organisations on specific complaints. If an NHS organisation rang the helpline and wanted to discuss an individual case, we would explain to them that we cannot provide specific advice in relation to individual cases”

There can be no disputing that the FOI officer has wasted an enormous amount of time and therefore public money in avoiding giving me this information and attempting to give me the impression that PHSO does advise NHS trusts on ongoing complaints. Why is this?

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/p...

Yours faithfully,

Susan Wilkinson

foiofficer, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

Thank you for your e-mail to the Parliamentary and Health Service
Ombudsman. This return e-mail shows that we have received your
correspondence.

show quoted sections

All email communications with PHSO pass through the Government Secure
Intranet, and may be automatically logged, monitored and/or recorded for
legal purposes.
The MessageLabs Anti Virus Service is the first managed service to achieve
the CSIA Claims Tested Mark (CCTM Certificate Number 2006/04/0007), the UK
Government quality mark initiative for information security products and
services. For more information about this please visit www.cctmark.gov.uk

Jt Oakley left an annotation ()

Although none of this guidance specifically addresses the situation you describe, I hope it is helpful. ......

Why do they always put 'I hope this is helpful' when they do not address themselves to answering the request?

Either the answer is..

Yes we do - and here's the written instructions for us to do so.

Or the answer is No - And here's the written instructions preventing us from doing so.