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Client Grievance Procedure

INTRODUCTION:

It is the intent of Community Counseling Center to provide services in an equitable manner and with full respect of all due rights of its service consumers.  There may be times, however, when a consumer feels he/she has been responded to in a way that denies or violates his/her rights as a client.  When this occurs, the agency seeks to address the complaint or grievance in a responsive and impartial manner and to strive for a fair resolution.  Following are the agency's procedure for addressing client grievances:

A. At any time that a client feels aggrieved (that is, that his/her rights as a client have been denied or violated) he/she is encouraged to:

Make this complaint known to the Agency Client Right's Officer in writing.  This person is responsible to assist the person in filing a grievance, to investigate the grievance on behalf of the griever, and to represent the griever at the agency hearing on the grievance, if desired by the griever. The grievance must be dated/signed by the client or individual filing the grievance on behalf of the client.  The person should communicate to the client that the action will not result in retaliation or barriers to services.

Client Rights Officer:                                     
Georgia Farris Romanko, Ext. 414                   
Community Counseling Center 
2801 "C" Court                                                   
Ashtabula, Ohio 44004
440.998.4210 or 800.998.4210

If the client's rights officer is unavailable or is the subject of the grievance, the alternative person designated to assist the client with his/her grievance is:
Mary Beth Porter, Ext. 483

        Available during business Hours: Monday ‑ Friday

B.  ALL CORPORATION STAFF have a continuing responsibility to immediately advise any client or other person who is expressing concern, compliant, or grievance of the availability of the client right's officer and the complainant's right to file a grievance.  All reasonable efforts will be made to provide persons with prompt access to the client rights officer.

C.  TIMELINES

  1.  A client may file a grievance at any time regardless of how long removed from the occurrence of the actions which caused the grievance.  However, clients are encouraged to make grievances known as promptly as possible as this will lead to a higher probability of satisfactory investigation and resolution.
  2. Once a grievance has been brought to the attention of the client rights officer and has been filed, the time frame for the client rights officer and the agency to process the grievance to a resolution shall not exceed  (20) twenty working days from the date of filing the grievance.  Any extenuating circumstances indicating a need for an extension will be documented in the file and written notification given to the client.

GRIEVANCE PROCEDURE FLOW :

1. The client formulates complaint into a grievance which is received and logged in writing by the client rights officer. The grievance must include the date, approximate time and description of the incident and names of individuals involved.

2. Written acknowledgment of receipt of grievance is provided to each grievant within three (3) working days and includes; (a) date grievance received. (b) summary of grievance. (c) overview of the investigation process. (d) time table for investigation/notification of resolution. (e) treatment provider contact name/ address/ Phone number.

3. Client Rights Officer investigates the grievance, gathers facts, speaks with all parties involved, and attempts to effect resolution satisfactory to the griever.  If resolved, a written statement of results is given to the client.

4.  If not resolved to griever's satisfaction, the griever is entitled to a hearing before the CEO of the agency, as an impartial decision-maker.  At said hearing, the griever may be represented by the client rights officer, by his/herself, or by any other person the griever chooses as their designated representative.  At said hearing, the CEO will review pertinent information and hear from the parties involved.  The CEO will present his/her judgment concerning the grievance in writing to the griever, the client rights officer, and other parties involved.  At this point, the grievance is resolved at the Corporation level.

5.  If the griever remains unsatisfied, or at an earlier step in the process, he/she may initiate a complaint with any of several outside entities, specifically:

Mental Health and Recovery Services Board of Ashtabula Co.                                 
4817 State Road, Suite 203, Ashtabula, OH. 44004                                                   
440.992.3121

Ohio Board of Nursing
17 South High Street, Suite 400
Columbus, OH. 43215
614.466.3947

The Ohio Department of Mental Health & Addiction Services
30 East Broad St., 36th Floor
Columbus, OH. 43215
614.466.2596

Ohio State Board of Psychology
77 South High Street
Columbus, OH 43215
614.466.8808

The Ohio Legal Rights Service
8 E. Long St. 5th Floor
Columbus, OH. 43215                                                                
614.466.7264

State Medical Board of Ohio
30 East Broad Street
Columbus, OH 43215
614.466.3934                                                                      

The U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services
Office for Civil Rights, Region V
233 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 240
Chicago, IL. 60601
800.368.1019

Disability Rights Ohio
50 W. Broad St., Suite 1400
Columbus, OH 43215
800.282.9181     

Ohio Counselor, Social Worker and Marriage and Family Therapist Board
50 West Broad Street, Suite 1075
Columbus, OH.43215
614.466.0912

Appropriate professional licensing or regulatory associations.  The address and phone numbers of these groups are appended to this procedure statement.  The client rights officer will assist the client if requested in furnishing all relevant information about the grievance to one or more of those organizations.

5. The Corporation administration shall support the client rights officer to take all steps necessary to process client grievances and to otherwise assure compliance with this grievance procedure.

E.  POSTING AND DISTRIBUTION

This procedure shall be posted in a conspicuous place and a written copy of it given to each applicant or client upon request.

F. RECORD KEEPING AND REPORTING

1. While investigating grievances, the client rights officer shall record pertinent information that clarifies actions, events, and facts; and presents the opinions or observations of those involved.  This information shall be maintained with the grievance and protected as client confidential information.

2. The clients’ rights officer shall keep records of each grievance received, the subject matter of the grievance, and the resolution.  These records shall be available for review by the local Mental Health & Recovery Services Board and the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services upon request.

3. The client rights officer shall annually prepare a report summarizing the number of grievances received, type of grievance, and resolution status.         

4.  Subsequent substantive changes will be submitted for approval to the Corporation’s Board of Directors.

 

 

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