Under the NHS Constitution, if you're not happy with the care or treatment you've received from us or you've been refused treatment for a condition without any explanation, you have the right to complain, have your complaint investigated, and be given a full and prompt response.
We operate an in-house complaint procedure to deal with your complaints. This procedure does not deal with matter of legal liability or compensation. In some cases the in-house procedure is not an appropriate form of investigation, in which case you will be directed to the appropriate authority.
This procedure does not affect your right to make a formal complaint to the Health Service Ombudsman if you so wish. Nor does it affect your right to seek compensation in law.
You can seek confidential advice on how to make a complaint from various organisations such as the Patient Advice and Liaison Service, the Citizens Advice Bureau or NHS Direct. Please refer to the contact details at the end of this leaflet.
The vast majority of complaints in General Practice are resolvable at the Practice level. We suggest that you speak to your GP or the Practice Manager informally in the first instance. If it relates to what you see as unsatisfactory service by a clinician, you can speak with another GP within the Practice. We assure you that all conversations in regard to your complaint will be kept confidential.
If you decide to make a verbal complaint, the person you are speaking with should make a record in writing. They should provide you with a copy or send one to you.
Your complaint should be addressed to the Practice Manager at the above address who will ensure that it is acknowledged and a formal offer to discuss your complaint is arranged within three days of your complaint being received by the Practice. We assure you that your complaint will be investigated thoroughly, impartially and as speedily as possible. Current regulation requires NHS bodies to respond within a maximum period of six months. However, we appreciate that many patients are anxious about the outcome of their complaints and so we aim to report back to you within three weeks although, in some cases, more time may be required. In this case, you will be informed in writing.
Please note that the practice must ensure strict adherence the rule of medical confidentiality authority. We cannot provide confidential information without appropriate authority if you are not the patient in question.
A copy of our complaint form is enclosed. You do not have to use it if you prefer to set out your complaint in your own way. We can help to write down your complaint if you feel you need help to do so. Please do not hesitate to contact the Practice Manager who will be pleased to assist you. Please be aware that you should make a complaint within twelve months of an incident happening or becoming aware of the matter complained about.
Please complete and send your complaint to the Practice Manager as soon as possible. Kindly mark any correspondence `Private & Confidential’.
Your complaint will then be investigated by someone within the Practice who is not associated with your complaint. It is likely that the investigator will contact you directly to ensure that the complaint has been fully understood.
At the conclusion of the investigation your complaint will be discussed with you in detail.
We would like to assure you that the Practice takes every complaint seriously and sincerely, and where applicable, will use it to improve services,
Brief Summary of the Complaints Procedure:
Speak with a GP or Practice Manager informally about your grievance.
Make a verbal or written complaint.
Your complaint will be acknowledged within three working days and you will be advised on the subsequent steps being taken to investigate your complaint.
The investigator will contact you in most cases to understand the issue first hand. When the investigation is complete, he or she will contact you directly to meet and discuss the outcome with you. If you are satisfied with the outcome, then the case will be deemed as closed.
Should you still be dissatisfied with the outcome of the investigation, you have the right to take your complaint further OR if you do not feel comfortable talking about your complaint with one of the GPs or the Practice Manager in your Practice in the first place, you have the option of contacting one or more of the organisations listed below. Please be reminded that the list is not comprehensive but covers the most accessed. You can also seek advice from these organisations on how to make a complaint.
Getting Help & Advice
From 1st April 2013 patients who have a comment or complaint about a GP, dentist, pharmacy or optician, which cannot be resolved locally with the practice manager can contact NHS England by post: NHS England, PO Box 16738, Redditch B97 9PT or tel: 0300 311 2233
The Parliamentary & Health Service Ombudsman: 0345 015 4033
Independent Complaints Advocacy Service London: 0300 456 2370
NHS Direct: 0845 4647 www.nhsdirect.nhs.ukKMC Complaints Form 3 pages APR 2013.doc
Kingsmead Healthcare Complaints Form