The Independent Healthcare Providers Network (IHPN) offers advice on what patients should expect from independent healthcare.

If you are considering private healthcare, please remember that:

  • You can expect to be treated safely and effectively with a professional standard of care, and receive a good patient experience;
  • You are entitled to access information about the safety of care and treatment at your chosen hospital, and be involved in giving patient feedback; 
  • Medical and health professionals must work together in your best interests. They must coordinate care between teams and between private healthcare and the NHS;
  • Private hospitals must have a robust complaints’ procedure with access to independent adjudication;
  • You should be informed on how to raise a complaint if necessary, and be supported through the process. Doctors and healthcare professionals have a duty to cooperate fully in any investigation and to review their practice.                                                            

The Patients Association supported the IHPN in creating this short film to help clarify patients' expectations, and empower them in their decision making. 

You can watch the information video here: 

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Contact the Patients Association helpline

The Patients Association offers a free national helpline providing specialist information and advice to help patients make sense of their health and social care.  

Patients can talk directly to trained advisers in strict confidence about any concerns, questions or general experiences they have regarding the NHS and social care systems.  

The helpline is open from 9.30 am to 5pm, Monday to Friday, and calls outside these times are returned as soon as possible during opening hours. 

If you would like to contact the helpline, please call free on 0800 345 7115, or visit the Patients Association helpline page on our website for more information. 

This page was updated on 25th March 2024 and will be reviewed in March 2026.