Complaints Handling policy- March 2021
Code of practice for complaints
All the members of the Dental Team at this practice are committed to delivering high-quality care and service to all our patients. Should a patient claim that this has not been their experience, we need to know about the patient’s experience and learn how we can improve our services.
- If the patient is unhappy with the choice of an appointed person, an alternate member of the dental team will take on the role of complaints manager
- The Practice receives complaints by letter, telephone, e-mail or directly made to reception staff
- Where a complaint is made about the treatment of a patient, but the patient themselves has not made the complaint, it is necessary to obtain their written consent for the complaint to be made on their behalf.
- The complaint shall be passed on to the Complaints Manager immediately and it will be acknowledged within 3 working days. Any delays experienced during the preliminary investigation are alerted to the patient who is kept informed of progress.
- The patient shall be invited to discuss the complaint via telephone call or during a meeting at the Practice and a plan agreed with them to include a date when the response will be sent to them and whether or not they want to meet to discuss the outcome of the complaint or whether they want the response in writing. A record of the discussion shall be made and the patient is given a copy.
- A further investigation shall be carried out following on from an initial meeting with the patient. The patient is kept informed of progress throughout the investigation. Should any contact be made to third parties, written consent is obtained from the patient.
- A further meeting shall be arranged and the findings of the investigation are discussed with the patient. Prior to the meeting, the patient shall be informed of all attendees. The patient has the right to bring a representative with them.
- Comprehensive notes shall be taken and verified as a true record by all involved in the meeting.
- If the patient is unwilling to attend a meeting, discussions are held via telephone.
- The patient will receive a copy in writing of the meeting or telephone conversation which will conclude with a decision made about the complaint.
- Translation services, sign language or Braille services are used to enable the patient to understand the proceedings at any point during the complaint’s lifespan.
If you remain dissatisfied after we have fully investigated the complaint you have the option of asking the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman to look at the complaint:
Parliamentary and health service, Millbank Tower, Millbank, London
If you do not wish to complain directly to the practice, you may complain directly to NHS England on;
PO BOX 16738, REDDITCH, B97 9PT
Tel: 0300 311 2233
You can get support with making a complaint from the NHS complaints advocacy services which is operated by POhWER.
This policy is reviewed annually by the dental practice manager