Dissatisfaction with care: filing an objection or a complaint in health care
Dissatisfaction with care 1
If you are dissatisfied with the care given to yourself or to a family member:
- Discuss the matter at the care facility.
- File a written objection with the care facility.
- File a complaint with the relevant Regional State Administrative Agency (or, if the person in question died or sustained a severe and permanent injury, with Valvira).
Dissatisfaction with care 2
1. Discuss the matter at the care facility
The principal course of action in case of any irregularities in care is to discuss the matter at the care facility. You can talk to the employee providing the care or to their supervisor. This is the quickest way to investigate the case.
You may also contact the patient ombudsman if you need advice or assistance in handling the case.
If the discussion does not help, the next step is to file a written objection with the care facility.
2. File a written objection
Write an explanation of the issue about which you are filing an objection. Be as clear as possible. Explain in detail when and where the incident occurred. You may write a freeform objection, or you may use the form provided, which can usually be found on the website of the care facility.
Send the objection to the manager in charge of health care at the care facility. The manager is obliged to investigate the matter and to respond to you in writing. The response will be returned in about one month.
If you are not satisfied with the response, you may file a complaint with the Regional State Administrative Agency.
3. File a complaint with the Regional State Administrative Agency (or, in special cases, with Valvira)
The majority of complaints regarding care should be filed with the relevant Regional State Administrative Agency. Instructions on how to file a complaint to the Regional State Administrative Agency can be found under ‘Enforcement and reporting violations’ (avi.fi).
You should file a complaint with Valvira only if you suspect that malpractice has led to the death of a patient or severe and permanent injury. You may file a complaint in the health care e-transaction service (valvira.fi), on a complaint form (valvira.fi, pdf) or as a freeform complaint. If you send your complaint to Valvira and Valvira has to refer it to the Regional State Administrative Agency, this will significantly delay the processing of the complaint.
How do I file a complaint with Valvira online?
For online complaints, we need the following details:
- details of the person filing the complaint
- details of the patient
- object of the complaint: operating unit or care facility
- date of the incident
- description of the matter or incident that is the subject of the complaint
- details of any objections or complaints filed previously
- details of how the matter has been processed with other parties (if any)
E-transactions require you to log in using online banking IDs or a mobile certificate.
If Valvira or the Regional State Administrative Agency concludes that malpractice has occurred or that care has been inappropriately provided, they may issue administrative guidance to the health care professional or responsible party in question. The purpose of such guidance is to guide that professional or facility to act otherwise in the future. Further information on the consequences of a complaint: (valvira.fi).
Neither Valvira nor the Regional State Administrative Agency can amend or overturn a physician’s diagnosis or care decision on the basis of a complaint, nor can they overturn decisions made by a court of law or by any other public authority.
You cannot seek monetary compensation through a complaint. For monetary compensation, you need to apply to the Patient Insurance Centre (pvk.fi).
Our aim is to process complaints within one year of receiving them.
The supervisory authorities generally do not address matters that are more than two years old.
By filing your complaint with the appropriate authority, you ensure that your complaint and those of others are processed in a timely manner. Every year, Valvira is obliged to refer about 1,000 complaints to a Regional State Administrative Agency for processing, and this significantly delays the processing of those complaints.
Health care supervision tel. +358 295 209 444 on weekdays 9-11 a.m.