Skip to main content

Independent Complaints Advocacy Service

Volume 409: debated on Friday 18 July 2003

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the key stages were in the commissioning of the independent complaints advocacy service due to commence on 1 September; and what the (a) planned and (b) actual date for completion of each stage was. [125807]

Standard Department of Health Procurement Procedures for a Category B—Residual Service (OJEC/OJEU exempt) were used to ensure a robust process. The key stages were:

  • 1. the request for expressions of interest;
  • 2. issuing the invitations to tender;
  • 3. the evaluation of tenders and selection of preferred providers; and
  • 4. award of contracts.
  • For each stage the planned (March 2003) and actual dates were:

  • 1. 23 and 28 March;
  • 2. 13 and 14 May;
  • 3. 18 and 30 June; and
  • 4. 7 July and 9 July.
  • To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to his answer of 9 July 2003, Official Report, column 861W, how the feedback from the ICAS pilots was (a) collected and evaluated and (b) used to inform the ICAS system commissioned by the Department. [125818]

    Feedback from the independent complaints advocacy service (ICAS) pilots has been collected in two ways. Statistical data were collected from the ICAS pilots on a quarterly basis and the information received from the second quarter provided information for tenderers of the new service on volumes of caseload broken down into levels of complexity of complaints. Qualitative analysis of regular ICAS pilots' reports and regional meetings of ICAS pilots informed the tender requirements by raising issues such as working to consistent national standards and the need for arrangements with specialist providers for complex casework. A final evaluation of the pilots is now under way and will build on feedback on issues such as relationships with national health service complaints and patient advocacy liaison services departments, as well as best ways for working with vulnerable groups. A final report will be published in October 2003 and will inform on-going service provision by the new ICAS providers as well as the Commission for Patient and Public Involvement in Health with its role of monitoring the ICAS service.