The Care Inspectorate is the independent scrutiny and improvement body for care, social work and child protection in Scotland. We regulate and inspect care services and carry out social work and child protection inspections. We make sure that people receive the highest quality of care and that their rights are promoted and protected.

The Care Inspectorate considers that a robust and accessible complaints procedure is an essential part of its duties as a fair and effective regulator. The complaints procedure should ensure that the interests of people who use care services and their carers are at the heart of all regulatory activity.

The Care Inspectorate is governed by legislation (The Public Services Reform (Scotland) Act 2010). This requires us to have a procedure for receiving and investigating complaints, from members of the public or their representatives, about the provision of a care service. Our procedure must be available even when the provider of the service has a complaints procedure in place. We are also required to have arrangements for receiving and considering complaints about how we undertake our business as the regulator of care services.

Since 1 April 2011 we have been using an interim complaints procedure. We are now seeking your views and invite you to respond to our survey about future arrangements for complaints handling.

This consultation runs from 7 October to 30 December 2011. We have produced this survey with specific questions and the opportunity to make additional comments.

Developing new procedures often means we also have to develop our IT systems to support them. This in turn can mean a wait time for new procedures to begin.

*Please note the Care Inspectorate is formally known as Social Care and Social Work Improvement Scotland (SCSWIS).*