PTUK's Complaint Procedures
We try to ensure that all PTUK members deliver the highest
standards of therapeutic care. However, if you become unhappy with the service
that you are given, or are worried about the conduct of a PTUK member, we
suggest that you talk to our member first about your concerns to try and sort
things out informally. Every practising member has to have a Clinical
Supervisor, so you may wish to talk to them as well.
However if for any reason this is not possible, or hasn't
solved the issue, then you can always raise your concerns directly with us. To
make complaints hearings as quick, fair and effective as possible we have a
three stage process:
- Pre-hearing assessment
- Professional Conduct Hearing
respond to the initial complaint within 48 hours. It will keep
complainants informed of the progress and timescales of each stage, as they will be dealt with, according to the complexity of the issue.
Phone 01825 761143 stating that you wish to complain about a
PTUK Member, with brief details and your own contact phone number. You will
then be given an email or postal address for you to provide more details. If
you call out of office hours please leave a message. We aim to respond within
Alternatively you can write to:
The Chief Executive
Play Therapy UK
The Coach House
East Sussex TN22 1BP
Mark your letter 'Highly Confidential and Urgent'.
The Chief Executive will contact you, normally within 48
hours and ask you for details: the name and address of the child or young
person; the name and work address of the person that you are complaining about;
details of the services used including dates and number of sessions and any
other relevant details - what has happened, as much information as possible.
The Chief Executive will most probably recommend mediation
in the first instance as the quickest and most effective way of resolving the
issue. If this is not appropriate or turns out to be unsatisfactory for you, a
formal complaints procedure will be started.
The first stage is a Pre-Hearing Assessment Panel with not
less than three persons appointed by the Chief Executive including a member of
the public and a Play Therapist unconnected with your case. This panel will decide
if there are valid grounds for a complaint hearing. They will take into
- The person that you are complaining about is a current
member of PTUK. We cannot deal with complaints against individuals or
organisations who were not members of PTUK at the time of the alleged breach of
- You must either have used the therapeutic play services of
the member or be complaining on behalf of a child or young person with whom the
person has worked.
- The complaint legitimately falls under one of the three
headings for complaints specified in the PTUK Ethical Framework:
- Professional misconduct – where the practitioner has
contravened the ethical and behaviour standards that should reasonably be
expected of a member of PTUK.
- Professional malpractice – where the service/s provided have
fallen below the standards that would reasonably be expected of a practitioner
exercising reasonable care and skill. Examples of 'malpractice' include:
Incompetence, negligence, recklessness, inadequate professional services.
- Bringing the profession into disrepute - signifies that the
practitioner has acted in such an infamous or disgraceful way that the public's
trust in the profession might reasonably be undermined if they were accurately
informed about all the circumstances of the case.
- A complaint must be lodged within three years of the alleged
- If the complaint is under investigation by the police or is
likely to fall within the jurisdiction of any court or tribunal, for example
for financial compensation, PTUK will not usually accept and investigate the
If the complaint is rejected by the Panel, you and the
Member complained against will be formally notified in writing. The decision of
the Panel will be final.
If the complaint is accepted, the Chief Executive will
initiate the second stage of the formal complaints procedure by appointing a
Professional Conduct Panel of not less than five persons to examine the
complaint in detail and decide whether the complaint is proved or not.
If your complaint reaches this stage, you may wish to
consider other options and engage professional advisers – the cost for any such
advice will not be met by the PTUK. You are also advised to consult the full PTUK complaints procedure obtainable from:
If the complaint is proved, the panel will decide whether or
not any sanction should be imposed upon the member. These could include:
- Probationary period. The member may continue to practice
under certain conditions with an increased amount of clinical supervision, with
prescribed actions that must be completed within a specified period of time
- Suspension of Membership and removal from the PTUK Register.
The member is deemed unable to practice until further training prescribed to
meet the situation and/or taken other steps to become fit for practice have
been undertaken, to the Panel's satisfaction
The decision of the Professional Conduct Panel, together
with details of any sanction, will be published in PTUK's journal in such
detail as deemed appropriate to the findings and at its discretion. Such
decisions will be based on considerations of public interest and the severity
of the findings.