If you are unhappy with the treatment that you received or the manner in which the healthcare personnel have treated you, you should primarily try to discuss the matter with the treatment provider. Errors and deficiencies in treatment can usually be clarified and rectified by discussing them with the person providing the treatment or their supervisor. If necessary, the patient ombudsman can help you investigate the matter.
If the matter cannot be solved by means of negotiations, you can submit a claim or a complaint. You can also submit a claim or complaint on behalf of someone else.
The claim is addressed to the management of the healthcare unit
If the discussions held at the treatment unit are not helpful, you can submit a claim to the responsible director of the unit.
- Submit your claim verbally or in writing to the responsible director of the unit. The units often have forms that you can use to file your claim in writing.
- Make your description as clear as possible and mention any people that the claim concerns. If you cannot recall any names, explain the time and date of the event in as much detail as possible.
- The healthcare unit must respond to your claim in writing within a reasonable time, in approximately one month after the claim has been submitted. The response must indicate how your matter has been analysed at the location and which actions have been taken as a result.
- You cannot appeal the response given to the claim.
Complaints are submitted to the Regional State Administrative Agency or the National Supervisory Authority for Welfare and Health (Valvira)
You can submit a complaint if you find that there are deficiencies in the treatment.
- The complaint is submitted to Valvira when the matter concerns the care of a patient who was killed or severely injured during treatment and the complainant suspects malpractice. The complaint can be submitted as a free-form document or by using the complaint form available on Valvira’s website.
- Other complaints concerning treatment are submitted to the Regional State Administrative Agency of the region where the treatment was provided.
- Valvira or the Regional State Administrative Agency may issue a warning to the healthcare professional or the management of the location or order them to correct the shortcomings. The order may be issued with a conditional penalty payment. The operation of the facility may also be stopped.
- Valvira may issue a written warning to a healthcare professional or limit their right to practice their profession. The right to practice a profession may also be revoked entirely.
A complaint cannot change or revoke a diagnosis or treatment decision made by a doctor or dentist. Moreover, a complaint will not entitle you to monetary compensation for treatment injury; you must apply for compensation from the Patient Insurance Centre.
Valvira and the Regional State Administrative Agencies may transfer a complaint that has been sent to them to the healthcare unit involved, where it is processed as a claim. The complainant is always informed of the transfer.
If you are unhappy with the extent of the provided treatment
If you are unhappy with the extent of the treatment you received within public healthcare, you should primarily try to work on the matter with the treatment provider. If the matter cannot be resolved and you remain unhappy, you can submit a request to an administrative court where the matter is processed as administrative litigation. The request letter must mention the demanded procedure and the justifications for the demand.
Administrative litigation is instituted by submitting a request to an administrative court. The request is addressed to the municipality or joint municipal authority that is responsible for arranging the treatment.