The independent Aged Care Complaints Commissioner, Rae Lamb has released her first annual report, detailing the first six months of operations since taking over responsibility for the Aged Care Complaints Scheme in January 2016.

The annual report describes the types and numbers of complaints the Commissioner received, how they have been handled and shares case studies showing how complaints can improve care and services – testament to the work the Complaints Commissioner and staff are doing to educate service users or care recipients on how best to make a complaint and improve the way aged care services respond to and manage complaints.

Since January 2016, the report shows the Complaints Commissioner has handled 2,153 complaints, 11 per cent more than the same period in 2015. Ms Lamb said the report reflects the positive outcomes from the new independent complaints handling arrangements. “In many cases we have seen the service provider learn from the complaint and act on opportunities to improve care for others,” Ms Lamb said.

The Complaints Commissioner is committed to working with individuals and providers to acknowledge and resolve concerns or complaints and make a positive difference for Australia’s aged care recipients, ensuring they are well cared for and protected. The Commissioner also strives to ensure aged care service providers learn from complaints and act on opportunities to continually improve aged care services whilst also educating individuals and service providers about the best ways to handle complaints and the issues they raise.