Policy for Patient Complaints
We take complaints very seriously and try to ensure that all our patients are pleased with their experience of our service. When patients complain, they are dealt with courteously and promptly so that the matter is resolved as quickly as possible. This procedure is based on these objectives.
Our aim is to react to complaints in the way in which we would want our own complaint about a service to be handled. We learn from every mistake we make and respond to patients concerns in a caring and sensitive way.
- The people responsible for dealing with any complaint about the service we provide are J. T. Blankendaal (Practice owner and principle) and Lisa Marks (Practice manager).
- If a patient complains on the telephone or at the reception desk, we will listen to their complaint and offer to refer him/her to Lisa Marks or J. T. Blankendaal as soon as possible. In the unlikely event that either is not available at the time, then the patient will be told when the next available option will be to speak to them and arrangements will be made for this to happen. The member of staff will take brief details of the complaint and pass them on. If we cannot arrange this within a reasonable period of time or the patient does not wish to discuss the matter, arrangements will be made for someone else to deal with it.
- If the patient wishes to complain in writing, the letter will be passed on immediately to J. T. Blankendaal or Lisa Marks.
- If a complaint is about any aspect of clinical care or associated with charges it will normally be referred to the dentist in question, unless the patient does not want this to happen.
- We will acknowledge the patient’s complaint in writing as soon as possible, normally within three working days. We will seek to investigate the complaint within ten working days of receipt to give an explanation of the circumstances which led to the complaint. We will do our best to communicate with the patient by whatever means the patient feels most comfortable with (e.g. Telephone, letter, email). If we are unable to investigate the complaint for any reason within 10 working days we will notify the patient, giving reasons for the delay and a likely period within which the investigation will be completed.
- We will confirm the decision about the complaint in writing immediately after completing our investigation.
- Proper and comprehensive records are kept of any complaint received.
- If patients are not happy with the result of our procedure then a complaint may be made to:
The General Dental Council (GDC – Dental registration body) 37 Wimpole St, London, W1M 8DQ www.gdc-uk.org
Ombudsman: Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman on 0345 015 4033. www.ombudsman.org.uk
Online at complaints section of NHS Choices website: www.nhs.uk