Whilst the doctors and staff at this practice are committed to provide a quality service, there may be times when this service falls short of your expectations. If you have a complaint or concern about the service that you have received you are entitled to ask for an explanation.
In line with NHS guidelines, we operate an in-house procedure, designed to deal with your complaint quickly and efficiently. Most complaints will be dealt with by the practice manager, who will ensure that your complaint is investigated thoroughly. The process will normally take about 10 working days from receipt of the complaint, although in some cases it may take a little longer. Where a complaint concerns aspects of a medical nature it may be appropriate to involve another doctor from the practice in the investigation.
In some cases where there is a legal liability or a request for compensation the practice may not be able to deal with your complaint. In such cases we will pass your concerns on to the appropriate authority.
How to Complain
Please write to the practice manager setting out as much information regarding the circumstances of your complaint as possible as soon as possible after the event. We prefer the complaint to be written, so that you can express your concerns in your own way. If you would prefer someone from the practice to take down your complaint over the telephone or face to face, then this can be arranged. Please note however that in such circumstances the practice will not comment on your complaint without fully investigating the facts.
What We Shall Do
We will acknowledge your complaint within 3 working days and if you made your complaint orally, we will include a written summary of your complaint which you should sign and return.
The complaint will be fully investigated, including obtaining statements from members of staff involved, reviewing health records, seeking professional advice on clinical aspects and it may be necessary to contact you to clarify any issues.
Once the investigation is complete, the practice manager will respond with a fully written explanation. However, if you prefer we can arrange to meet with you and discuss your complaint and our findings. Please be assured your future care will not be impacted by making a complaint.
Complaining on Behalf of Someone Else
Please note that the practice must ensure strict adherence to the rule of medical confidentiality. If you are complaining on behalf of someone else we cannot provide confidential information without appropriate authority and therefore a letter of consent signed by the person concerned will be needed, unless they are not able (because of illness) to provide this.
Complaining to the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG)
We hope that if you have a problem you will use our practice complaints procedure, which is also called “local resolution”. We believe this will give us the best chance of resolving the matter and an opportunity to improve our practice. However, complainants can now complain to the PCT and request that the PCT investigates their complaint if they do not wish to complain directly to the practice.
In cases where this happens, the PCT Complaints Team will discuss the options with the complainant and the practice and reach a decision based on the individual circumstances of the case and the views of all involved.
The Complaints Team
NHS North East Essex
Tel: (01206) 286850 Fax (01206) 286852
This does not affect your right to approach the (PHSO) Parliamentary Health Service Ombudsman for independent review. This must be done within 6 months of the date that you receive a full response from us.
The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman
London SW1P 4QP
Ombudsman’s Helpline: (0345) 015 4033
Complaining to the Health Service
PALS is a Patient Advice and Liaison Service for people using the NHS. It is there to help patients, carers, relatives and friends to resolve any problems as quickly and easily as possible, and to provide any information they may require.
You can contact PALS at:
ICAS is the Independent Complaints Advocacy Service. It is a free, client-led, independent and confidential service to help you if you wish to make a complaint about the NHS. You can contact ICAS at:
POHWER ICAS (Essex)
7 Lords Court, Cricketers Way