Guiding with Purpose – Fairness at every step
Patient Ombudsman’s 2022/23 annual report highlights the growing number of Ontarians who have nowhere to turn with their health care concerns.
TORONTO, Nov. 15, 2023 – Data from Patient Ombudsman’s 2022/23 Annual Report shows a 33% increase in complaints over the previous year and a significant growth in complaints about issues outside of Patient Ombudsman’s jurisdiction, most notably about primary care.
The report also demonstrates the significant amount of support Patient Ombudsman provides to Ontarians navigating a complex system: the office provided thousands of referrals to other complaint bodies, to patient relations at health care organizations (such as hospitals), and to health services such as distress centres, emergency health services, legal services and more. For complaints about primary care, the office makes referrals where appropriate but for many, there is nowhere for patients to turn with their concerns.
In addition to providing an overview of complaints data, the report shares patient stories on important issues such as changes to the long-term care placement process and complaints about billing for ambulance and medical transportation. The report also provides an update on two issues examined in previous reports: concerns related to hospital emergency departments and the continuity and stability of home care services.
Patient Ombudsman received 4,388 total complaints in 2022/23.
37% of complaints involved concerns about service and organizations outside of Patient Ombudsman’s jurisdiction – more than the number of complaints about long-term care and home and community care combined.
Non-jurisdictional complaints were focused largely on experiences with primary care, including difficulties accessing walk-in clinics, lack of access to a physician, issues booking appointments or delays with care.
“Our office continues to help patients, residents and caregivers navigate a very complex, multi-layered system. The growing number of complaints to our office that fall outside of our jurisdiction is a troubling trend and highlights the gaps in complaint processes across Ontario’s health care system.”
– Craig Thompson, Patient Ombudsman
Who We Are
Patient Ombudsman’s role is to help resolve complaints from patients, residents and caregivers about their experiences in Ontario’s public hospitals, long-term care homes, home care services, and community surgical and diagnostic centres. Patient Ombudsman can also investigate issues that relate to matters of public interest. We take the time to listen closely to all perspectives without taking sides. Our work aims to improve the system for everyone by shining a light on issues of concern.
For media inquiries please contact: Amber Lepage-Monette, Senior Communications and Engagement Specialist Tel: 416-597-5392 Email: email@example.com