COMPLAINTS POLICY AND PROCEDURE

Introduction

We welcome your comments and suggestions on the facilities and services provided by the Practice.  If you are pleased with the service you receive or feel that there could be an improvement please let us know.

If you have a complaint or are concerned about the service you have received from the Doctors or the staff working in this Practice, please let us know.  We operate a practice complaints procedure are part of a NHS system for dealing with complaints.  Our complaints procedure meets national criteria.

 

How to Complain

We hope that most problems can be sorted out easily and quickly, often at the time they arise and with the person concerned.  If your problem cannot be sorted out in this way and you wish to make a complaint, we would like you to let us know as soon as possible or at the most within a few weeks – this will enable us to establish what happened more easily.  If it is not possible to do that please let us have the details of your complaint

  • within 12 months of the incident that caused the problem
  • within 12 months of discovering that you have a problem provided this is within 12 months of the incident

Complaints should be addressed to Practice Manager the designated Complaints Officer, or any of the Doctors.  Alternatively you may ask for an appointment with the Practice Manager in order to discuss your concerns.  She will explain the complaints procedure to you and will make sure that your concerns are dealt with promptly.  It will be a great help if you are as specific as possible about your complaint.

We hope that if you have a problem, you will use our complaints procedure.  We believe this will give us the best chance of putting right whatever has gone wrong and an opportunity to improve our practice.  But this does not affect your right to approach the local Health Authority if you feel you cannot raise your complaint with us.

You should contact NHS England for further advice. (This is a central advice center where the information is processed)

NHS England
C/O Box 16783
Redditch
Worcestershire
B97 9PT

E mail england.contactus@nhs.net
Telephone No. 0300 311 22 33

 

Who Can Complain?

  1. The Patient
  2. Anyone with the Patient’s written consent
  3. Anyone on behalf of someone too ill or too old to complain for themselves
  4. Where the patient is a child, by either parent or in the absence of both parents, the guardian or other adult who has care of the child
  5. Normally the next of kin where the patient has died
 

Complaining on behalf of someone else

Please note that we keep strictly to the rules of medical confidentiality.  If you are complaining on behalf of someone else we have to know that you have his or her permission to do so.  A note signed by the person concerned will be needed, unless they are incapable (because of physical or mental illness) of providing this

 

What shall we do

We shall acknowledge your complaint within three working days beginning with the day on which the complaint was made or, where that is not possible, as soon as reasonably practicable, and aim to have looked into your complaint within seven working days of the date when you raised it with us.  We shall then be in a position to offer you an explanation, or a meeting with the people involved.

When we look into your complaint we shall aim to:-

  • find out what happened and what went wrong
  • make it possible for you to discuss the problem with those concerned, if you would like this
  • make sure you receive an apology, where this is appropriate
  • Identify what we can do to make sure the problem will not happen again.
 

What happens next

First of all you will be invited to an informal discussion with the complaints officer who may be able to provide you with a satisfactory answer at that stage, if not you will be advised that the matter with be fully investigated and a further meeting arranged to discuss the outcome of this investigation.

The practice will agree an appropriate timescale with the complainant to resolve the complaint depending on the complexities and complainants expectations of response time, but we try to resolve with a 10 to 25 working days however, this timescale will depend upon the complexities of the complaint and the complainant’s expectation of response times.

If you still remain dissatisfied after the above you may then refer to the parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) at the following address.

Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO)      
Millbank Tower
Millbank
LONDON
SW1P 4QP

Alternatively they are available by email at phso.enquiries@ombudsman.org.uk

Also you can contact them by telephoning their helpline on 0345 015 4033.  Calls are charged at a local rate from wherever you are in the United Kingdom, and the helpline is open from 8.30am to 5.30 pm Monday to Friday.

The PHSO carry out independent investigations into complaints about UK government departments and their agencies, and the NHS in England – and help improve public services as a result. 

I would comment however, that within the NHS there is great emphasis on resolving complaints at a local level, and that the PHSO may refer a complaint back to the Surgery for further review if it is felt that all measures to resolve your concerns have not been taken.  Should you remain dissatisfied therefore, we find that a face to face meeting with the Doctors can be helpful to identify and address any outstanding issues, and if you wish, the complaints officer would be happy to arrange this for you. Please contact the Surgery and ask for the Practice Manager if you feel such a meeting would be of benefit to you.

Thank you once again for bringing your concerns to our attention.

Dated March 2018
Revision date March 2021