Complaints Modernisation. Part 2: longer term changes - Reform

Closed 18 Oct 2021

Opened 6 Sep 2021

Feedback updated 1 Apr 2022

We asked

The purpose of the consultation was to seek the views of the public and the relevant professional persons and bodies regarding the Department of Health and Social Care’s (“the Department”) proposals for longer term changes to be made under the Reform Bill – this was Part 2 of the consultation.

At the same time the Department also consulted on short term changes to the process for dealing with complaints about health and social care services (being made by Regulations) – this was Part 1 of the consultation.

You said

Twelve responses were received via the hub and 2 separate written responses were also received.

We did

The results to Part 1 of the consultation have been analysed and the written submissions have been reviewed by the Department to inform the content of the Complaints Regulations.

In November 2021 the Department reviewed the approach to determine whether the proposed Regulations were the best way to make the changes or whether a bespoke Bill (primary legislation) could be developed to address all issues in one go.

The Department determined that it remained committed to the Tynwald resolution to complete the modernisation of the existing Regulations as far as these Regulations would permit, noting that there would be plans for further reform within the Reform Bill. This would ensure that the necessary changes were made as soon as possible.

The Department also considered the practicality of setting up a new Independent Review Body ("IRB") for an interim period, and decided that it would be of greater benefit to the public to move towards setting up an Ombudsman at the earliest opportunity.

Following review of the consultation responses, the Department's preference would be for an Independent Ombudsman to be set up operationally independent from the Department and Manx Care. However, it is not possible to set up such a body under the Regulations; therefore, as an interim solution, it is intended that a Health and Social Care Ombudsman Body will be set up under the Social Services Act 2011.

In March 2022, the Department learned that it did not have the power within the current Acts to make the Regulations that had been drafted and consulted upon. As a result of this, a short Bill has been drafted to amend the Manx Care Act 2021 to give the Department the necessary powers to make the Regulations that had been drafted. It is intended that this Bill will be progressed quickly through the branches of Tynwald in order that the Regulations can be laid before Tynwald in June and July as planned.
After considering the outcomes of this consultation, the Department will draft a Bill and make the Regulations required to implement the proposals.
Work remains outstanding to consider the responses to part 2 of the consultation and develop the additional areas outlined in that consultation including establishing an independent Ombudsman. These will be developed as part of the policy development for the Reform Bill. A public consultation on a draft Reform Bill will take place in due course.

The full consultation response report can be found below.

Results updated 1 Apr 2022



The consultation aims to identify solutions to modernise and improve the health and social care complaints process.  This is part 2 and it poses some questions that will help to shape the approach to the handling of complaints in the longer-term, as part of a comprehensive review under the Department’s National Health and Social Care Services Bill (‘Reform Bill’). The aim of the Bill will be to modernise and consolidate the existing primary legislation in relation to the National Health and Social Care Service. Complaints will be one policy area within this Bill and will include consideration of a new approach to the independent review of complaints.

Part 1 of the consultation covers an updated approach for complaints handling in the short term that will be set out in supporting Regulations.

This consultation provides a summary of the issues that have arisen to date regarding the Department and Manx Care’s complaints policies and procedures that have not been able to be addressed within Regulations.

Why your views matter

The purpose of this consultation document is to give early sight of the Department’s longer-term plans for reform of complaints handling that can only be dealt with in primary legislation (the Reform Bill) and to seek views on those areas.


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