Code of Practice for all Patient Complaints
We want all our patients to be pleased with the service they receive, so we take complaints very seriously. If a patient makes a complaint, we will deal with it promptly and courteously. Our aim is to resolve the matter as quickly as possible following this procedure, and where possible, to the satisfaction of the patient.
A complaint may indicate a failing on our part, which we can learn from and make improvements to our service. We will adopt a 'no blame' approach when investigating a complaint and especially where individuals are identified, with the aim to reach a satisfactory conclusion. We will, at all times, be polite and respectful to our patients.
- The complaints manager is Lorraine Hamilton and she is responsible for dealing with all complaints about our service.
- You may complain in person, by telephone, letter or email. Please give as much information as possible. Let us know who or what you are complaining about, where and when the event happened and what you think we can do to resolve the situation.
- Complaints regarding clinical care or the amount charged for a treatment will be referred to the dentist concerned, unless you request otherwise.
- All formal, complaints will be acknowledged in writing as soon as possible but within three working days. A copy of this code of practice will be sent with the letter of acknowledgment.
- We will investigate the complaint speedily and efficiently and as far as reasonably practicable, will keep the patient informed of our progress. Investigations will normally be completed within 10 working days. If we are unable to complete within 10 days we will notify the patient giving any reasons for the delay.
- On completion of our investigation, we will provide the patient with a full written report which will include
- An explanation of how the complaint has been considered
- The conclusion reached in respect of each specific part of the complaint
- Details of any necessary remedial action
- Whether the practice is satisfied with any action it has already taken or will be taking as a result of the complaint.
- Proper and comprehensive records will be kept of all complaints received as well as any actions taken to improve services as a consequence of a complaint.
If a patient does not want to speak to us directly or if they feel unsatisfied with the result of a complaint then the following bodies can be contacted.
- Northern Ireland Ombudsman, Freepost BEL 1478, Belfast BT16BR Tel. 0800343424 or www.ni-ombudsman.org.uk for complaints regarding NHS treatment.
- The Dental Complaints Service, The Lansdowne Building, 2 Lansdowne Rd., Croydon, Greater London CR9 2ER Tel. 08456 120540 or www.dentalcomplaints.org.uk for complaints regarding private treatment.
- The General Dental Council, 37 Wimpole Street, London, WIM 8DQ ( Dentist and healthcare professionals registration body) Tel. 020 7167 6000
- The Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority ( RQIA ) 9th Floor Riverside Tower, 5 Lanyon Place Belfast BT1 3BT Tel.028 90517500
- Patient and Client Council ( PCC ) 1st Floor Lesley House 25-27 Wellington Place, Belfast BT1 6GD Tel 0800 917 0222