Suggestions and Complaints
The practice welcomes patient comments and acknowledges that from time to time its actions may fall below the standards expected by patients. The practice aims to learn from such occurrences and respond to patients concerns in a caring and sensitive way.
The aim of our complaints procedure is to resolve any matters which arise as soon as possible, ensure that all complaints are dealt with fairly and promptly, assist in improving communication within the practice and with patients and respond to complaints in the same way that we would want a complaint of our own handled.
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 resolved this way and you wish to make a complaint, please let us know as soon as possible, ideally, within days or at most a few weeks as this will enable us to establish what happened more easily. If it is not possible to do that, please let us have details of your complaint within 6 months of the incident that caused the problem; or within 6 months of discovering that you have a problem, provided this is within 12 months of the incident.
The complaint should be addressed to Mrs Siobhan Lennox (Practice Manager) or Mrs Kathryn Fortune (Business Manager) or any of the doctors. Alternatively, you may ask for an appointment with Mrs Lennox to discuss your concerns. She will explain the complaints procedure and ensure your concerns are dealt with promptly. It will be a great help if you are as specific as possible about your complaint.
What happens next?
If the initial complaint is raised by telephone or verbally, a staff member will take brief details along with your contact details and pass them to a senior colleague who will contact you to ascertain full details. If we cannot resolve the issue at this stage, the matter will be referred to the Practice Manager or Business Manager, or a GP partner in their absence.
If the matter is resolved at this first stage, the senior staff member will send an email to the Practice Manager detailing the nature of the complaint and how it has been resolved. Details of complaints are recorded to allow analysis of themes or trends.
If the complaint is received in writing it will be acknowledged within two working days. A standard letter will be sent to you explaining that a full investigation will take place within 10 working days. If the complaint cannot be dealt with within 10 working days you will be advised of an estimated date of response.
Thereafter, the practice manager will assess the nature of the complaint and determine the process for investigation. If the complaint is about the practice manager the matter will be referred to a GP partner at the earliest opportunity.
The practice manager will usually attempt to contact you by telephone discuss and hopefully resolve the matter. If desired a face to face meeting will be arranged.
In investigating the complaint, we hope to find out what happened and what went wrong, enable the patient to discuss the problem with those concerned if desired, identify the action required to ensure the problem is not repeated and where appropriate ensure an apology is received.
The complaint will either be resolved at this point or by letter as determined by you.
If you remain dissatisfied with the result of the practice investigation then you can seek assistance from the Independent Complaints Advocacy Service (ICAS), who can be contacted on 0300 456 8350 or NHS England via firstname.lastname@example.org with “For the attention of the Complaints Team” in the Subject Line.
The practice hopes to address patient concerns through its local resolution procedures however should this not be possible you can ask the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) to review your complaint by contacting them at The Parliamentary & Health Services Ombudsman, Millbank Tower, Millbank, London, SW1P 4QP. (Telephone: 0345 0154033, email: email@example.com).
The PHSO would normally expect any request to be lodged within 12 months; however you are encouraged to make the approach as soon as possible after the completion of local resolution.
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