The Quality, Complaints and Disputes Act (Wkkgz) requires healthcare providers to monitor, control and improve their own quality. Healthcare providers include healthcare institutions, as well as solo healthcare providers.
The law ensures that patients can rely on good care and proper, prompt and accessible handling of complaints and disputes. The Healthcare and Youth Inspectorate (IGJ) supervises compliance with the Wkkgz.
The Wkkgz in outline
- Clients have a right to information about, among other things, the performance of health care providers, so that they can make an appropriate choice among health care providers (for example, about how often a doctor has done a particular operation).
- Medical lapses and errors (incidents) must be reported to the client on a mandatory basis and recorded in the medical record.
- Healthcare providers will be required to check the credentials of new healthcare providers who will be employed by them or with whom they will work in an organized setting.
- Healthcare providers will have a safe environment to report and evaluate incidents.
- Dismissal due to serious dysfunction of a healthcare provider must be reported to IGJ.
- Complaints are handled transparently and informally with the help of a complaints officer.
- Healthcare providers must make a decision on a complaint within 6 weeks.
- Healthcare providers must be affiliated with a recognized dispute resolution body that makes binding rulings and can award damages.
An overview of obligations under the Wkkgz can be found in this brochure. More information is also available at Rijksoverheid.nl. On Wetten.overheid.nl you will find the text of the law and the related executive order.
Also cosmetic treatments and alternative care
Almost all forms of care are covered by the new law. In addition to ordinary care, such as general practitioner care, physical therapy, hospital care, and elder care, the law also applies to providers of, for example, cosmetic treatments or alternative care. This brought this group of over 40,000 healthcare providers under a statutory quality and complaints regime for the first time. This will give IGJ the ability to better supervise these sectors and intervene when abuses occur.
See also more on oversight of the alternative sector.
Mandatory reporting to IGJ
Healthcare providers are required by the Wkkgz to report a number of situations to IGJ as soon as possible. They are: