We aim to provide our patients with the best possible care we can and would like to hear from you if you think we have done something well, or if you have suggestions on how we could do something differently.
Equally we know that there will be times when we fall short of the mark and want to know if you are unhappy with our service.
Compliments, Comments, Concerns and Complaints
We would encourage you to speak to whoever you feel most comfortable with – your doctor, a nurse, a care navigator or a manager.
Complaints can be made by patients either on their own behalf or by a representative (with your consent).
If you have a complaint please do not be afraid to say how you feel. We welcome feedback to help us improve our standards and you will not be treated any differently because you have complained. We will do our best to put right anything that has gone wrong and this leaflet aims to help you to make your views known to us.
What are the time limits for making a complaint?
As soon as you can whilst you can remember the details clearly. Usually the NHS Complaints Procedures only deal with complaints made within 12 months of the event or within 12 months of finding out that there is something that you should complain about. This time limit might be waived if there are good reasons why you were not able to let us know earlier and we can still carry out an effective investigation.
When something goes wrong
If you have a complaint, feedback or a concern the quickest way to resolve it is to speak to a member of the team and if they can resolve it straight away they will do so. If not they will refer the matter to the Practice Manager who will take matters from there.
What happens next?
The Practice will acknowledge your complaint within 3 days. Your complaint will then be investigated and you will be kept informed of progress.
What other options do I have?
Complaints can be directed to the ICB rather than the practice and they may undertake the complaint handling or in some cases with your consent, may refer the complaint back to the practice. The ICB is obliged to notify the practice about any complaints it receives with your consent.
What happens if the complaint involves a hospital?
Where other organisations such as hospitals are involved in the complaint, we will ask you to contact them direct so that they can complete an internal investigation on their processes or the issue.
Once the investigation has been concluded either a phone call, an email or a letter will be sent to you setting out how we investigated your complaint as well as details of the actions taken or to be taken as a result of our findings. We hope that your complaint will be resolved at this stage, but if not we may invite you to discuss what else might be done. If you remain unhappy, we will write to advise you that we are satisfied with the way the complaint has been investigated and to provide you with details of the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman to whom you will then have recourse.
Who can help with your complaint?
The mediation service can often be helpful in resolving disputes between practices and their patients. Either party may request mediation but both parties must agree to its use before proceeding.
Health Complaints Advocacy Service (HCAS)
If you need help or support to make your complaint, you can contact HCAS. It provides a free service, independent of the NHS.
Primary Care Services
If you remain dissatisfied
If you remain dissatisfied with the response from the practice (or the ICB where your complaint was investigated by them) then you have the right to refer your complaint to the Health Service Ombudsman. They would require a clear statement of what issues remain outstanding.
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