Filing a Facility Complaint with the Pennsylvania Department of Health
Click here for Facility Complaint Form
In order to assist citizens, families or the public with concerns or issues they may have with facilities that are licensed and regulated by the Department of Health, such as Nursing Homes, Abortion Clinics, Hospitals, Ambulatory Surgery Centers, Home Health Providers, etc., the Pennsylvania Department of Health has developed an electronic complaint form. Before using this form, you should understand that the first course of action is to discuss your concerns or issues with the facility’s management and if they are unable to resolve the matter, then you should feel free to contact our Department for further assistance.
Please understand that concerns must be related to resident care and services for a formal complaint to be lodged and the Department’s purview is governed by State and Federal Regulations:
In preparing to contact the Department and complete this form, we do ask that you have a log of all calls/contact made with the facility in question as well as a listing of what information you were provided by the facility so that we have all background information prior to investigating this matter further. This information should include the name of the facility as well as the dates of contact; whom contact was made with and a phone number and/or email address. Also, please note the level of care if the facility has more than one level associated with it, for example if the facility has an assisted living area as well as a skilled care nursing home, please indicate that the skilled care is the location of the resident/patient. (Please note that the Department of Health does not regulate assisted living facilities or personal care homes)
Please provide a detailed description of the concerns or issues and how you would like to see it resolved. If you are filing this on behalf of a relative or friend, please be sure to include their contact information (including his or hers birth date and facility room number) along with the nature of your relationship to the affected individual. If contact information is provided, the Division/Field Office assigned will follow up with you directly with the findings of their investigation.
* It should also be noted that your complaint can be filed confidentially*. Our Department will contact you regarding the outcome of the investigation, but the facility will NOT be made aware of who filed the complaint. The facility will only be informed that a complaint has been filed.
The Complaint Process
If you have exhausted your efforts to resolve a problem with a facility/provider, then you can file a formal complaint with the Pennsylvania Department of Health. Below is an outline of how this process works:
- Once your complaint is received, it will be reviewed to determine which Division has authority over the facility identified. The information will then be forwarded to that Division for investigation.
- If complainant’s contact information (i.e., email address, phone number or physical mailing address) is provided, an acknowledgement will be sent generally within two to four business days, so that you are aware that we are in receipt of your complaint and the Division who is handling that matter. Contact information for that Division will also be provided if at any time during this process you would like to contact the field office directly regarding the processing of your complaint.
- Once the investigation is completed, the Division/field office responsible for investigating the complaint will provide the complainant with their findings.
- Please understand the investigation is conducted based on the State and Federal Regulations which guide the facility in question. These regulations are considered minimum requirements for facilities to operate in Pennsylvania.
- If the investigation finds that the facility is not in compliance with any of the State and/or Federal Regulations, the facility is issued a deficiency and is required to submit a Plan of Correction to the Department for review and approval. Once the facility has had an opportunity to correct the deficient practice, the Department reviews the facility’s progress to determine if they have truly corrected the deficient practice.
Click here for Facility Complaint Form
Contact the Pennsylvania Department of Health:
Pennsylvania Department of Health
Quality Assurance Complaint Hotline
Stephanie Kirkpatrick, Supervisor
Division of Nursing Care Facilities
Department of Health
Room 526 Health and Welfare Building
625 Forster Street
Harrisburg, PA 17120-0701