Recommendations made by PHSO

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Dear Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman,

Every year PHSO make a number of recommendations to government organisations where they find in favour of complainants and judge the service provider to be at fault. I would like to make a FOI request concerning the recommendations made in the year 2011 - 2012. I would like to know the following:

a) how many recommendations were made that year?
b) which organisations had PHSO recommendations made to them and how many per organisation?
c) did PHSO follow up on these recommendations?
d) how many were carried out fully, partially or not at all by the service providers?
e) is it possible to give some examples of the type of recommendations made?

Yours faithfully,

Della R.

foiofficer, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

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foiofficer, Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

1 Attachment

Dear Della R

 

Your information request

 

I write in response to your email of 29 May 2013 in which you make a
number of information requests about the recommendations that the
Ombudsman made in 2011-12 in relation to government organisations.  I have
understood your request to be for this information in relation to the
Parliamentary bodies that the Ombudsman has investigated in 2011-12.

 

a)    How many recommendations were made that year?

 

We made 305 recommendations to parliamentary bodies in 2011-12.    

 

b)   Which organisations had PHSO recommendations made to them and how
many per organisation?

 

Please see Table 1 that is attached to this email.

 

c)    Did PHSO follow up on these recommendations?

 

Yes we follow up on all recommendations that we make to parliamentary
bodies. Where we uphold a complaint we expect the organisations complained
about to comply with our recommendations in full, and within a reasonable
timescale, and we keep the case open in compliance until we are satisfied
that the remedy has been provided or until we decide that the organisation
have failed to comply.

 

d)   How many were carried out fully, partially or not at all by the
service providers?

 

303 of the 305 recommendations made by the Ombudsman in 2011/12 were
complied with. The remaining two recommendations that were not complied
with were recommendations made following investigations into the General
Social Care Council (GSSC) and the Children and Family Court Advisory and
Support Service (CAFCASS). 

 

In the case of the GSSC we asked them to re-investigate a complaint made
to them.  They did so, but using their current procedures rather than
those that were in force at the time the complaint was made.   We were not
satisfied with this.  However in March 2012 we agreed that, as the closure
of the GSSC was imminent, it served no useful purpose to pursue the matter
further.  

 

We also asked for CAFCASS to produce an action plan to prevent the
recurrence of the failures we found in our investigation.  CAFCASS did not
provide the requested plan, but made changes to their complaints process
which meant that out recommendation was overtaken by events and was no
longer applicable.    

 

     e) Is it possible to give some examples of the type of
recommendations made?

 

Where we uphold a complaint our general approach to remedy is to consider
some or all of the following: 

 

·         An apology, generally in every case where we uphold a
complaint. 

·         Is there any action the organisation can take to return the
complainant to the position they would have been in but for
maladministration?  This could include actions such as processing a
benefit claim, determining an immigration application, making a fresh
determination of benefit or child support entitlement, or tax liability.  

·         If the complainant has lost money as a result of
maladministration, we would generally recommend payment of compensation
for the amount lost. 

·         We may also ask for payment of interest for the period between
the loss of the money and the payment of compensation. 

·         Payment of compensation for non-financial loss such as distress
or inconvenience.  

·         Action to prevent the same problems happening again (Systemic
remedy)

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

Claire Helm

Freedom of Information/Data Protection Officer

Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman

W: [1]www.ombudsman.org.uk

 

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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

References

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1. http://www.ombudsman.org.uk/
http://www.ombudsman.org.uk/

Della left an annotation ()

PHSO costs approx £34,000,000 per annum so with 305 recommendations that works out at £111,475.40 each. It would be cheaper to give every complainant an apology and a voucher at the outset and give up the pretence of "investigation".

D. Speers left an annotation ()

Thank you Della,
Would be good to find out if PHSO accedpts recommendations from Select Committees or does she use discretionary powers to refuse acceptance (as in case of http://www.parliament.uk/business/commit...)
Dee

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