Julie Mellor, the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman, said:
We have been calling for a single public service ombudsman to make it much simpler and easier to complain about public services in England and we are delighted that the government has made a firm commitment to this today.
'The current system is too complex and confusing for people. The public should not have to work out who funds or runs the service they feel let down by and then which ombudsman service to turn to, to get a final decision on their complaint that has not been resolved locally.
'We want a unified public service ombudsman that will make it easier for people to get redress when things go wrong - what I call the ‘no wrong door’ approach to complaining. This will be better for the public, better for Parliament and provide better value for money.'
Note to Editors
1) Complaints about public service, including the NHS in England, are currently investigated by three distinct organisations - the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman, the Local Government Ombudsman and The Housing Ombudsman.
2) The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman makes final decisions on complaints that have not been resolved by the NHS in England and UK government departments and other UK public organisations. We do this fairly without taking sides.
3) The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman is accountable to Parliament.