Suggestions, Comments and Complaints

We welcome all suggestions and comments on the services provided by the practice.

We endeavour to give our patients the best care and attention possible. We regularly review our service and complaints/suggestions allow us to see areas in which we can improve.

We are continually looking to turn our patients’ feedback into real improvements in the services we provide. We use it to focus on the things that matter most to our patients, carers and their families.

We would like to hear from you if you have a suggestion or comment on how we can do things better to improve our patients’ experiences.

We’d also like to hear from you if you are pleased with the service you’ve received. We’ll let the staff involved know and share the good practice across our teams.

If you would like to submit a suggestion or comment please use our Feedback form, or if you wish us to respond, please use the Ask the Practice a Question form.

Complaints Procedure

Making a Complaint

If wish to make a formal complaint, you should do so, preferably in writing as soon as possible after the event, and ideally within a few days, as this helps us to establish what happened more easily. In any event, this should be:

  • Within 12 months of the incident
  • Or within 12 months of you discovering that
    you have a problem.

State your case clearly giving as much detail as you can.

If you are a registered patient you can complain about your own care. You are unable to complain about someone else’s treatment without their written authority.

We are able to provide you with a separate complaints form to register your complaint and this includes a third-party authority form to enable a complaint to be made by someone else. Please ask at reception for this. You can provide this in your own format providing this covers all the necessary aspects.

Send your written complaint to Megan Quinlan, the Practice Complaints Manager:

Practice Complaints Manager,
Orchard House Surgery,
Fred Archer Way,
Newmarket,
Suffolk,
CB8 8NU

What We do Next

We look to settle complaints as soon as possible. We will acknowledge receipt within 3 working days and aim to have looked into the matter within 30 working days.

You may then receive a formal reply in writing, or you may be invited to meet with the person(s) concerned to attempt to resolve the issue. If the matter is likely to take longer than this we will let you know and keep you informed as the investigation progresses.

When looking into a complaint we attempt to see what happened and why to see if there is something we can learn from this and make it possible for you to discuss the issue with those involved if you would like to do so.

When the investigations are complete your complaint will be determined and a final response sent to you.

Where your complaint involves more than one organisation (eg. social services) we will liaise with that organisation so that you receive one coordinated reply. We may need your consent to do this. Where your complaint has been sent initially to an incorrect organisation, we may seek your consent to forward this to the correct person to deal with.

The final response letter will include details of the results of your complaint and also your right to escalate the matter further if you remain dissatisfied with the response.

Complaining on Behalf of Someone Else

We keep to the strict rules of medical and personal confidentiality. If you wish to make a complaint and are not the patient involved, we will require the written consent of the patient to confirm that they are unhappy with their treatment and that we can deal with someone else about it.

Please ask at reception for the complaints form which contains a suitable authority for the patient to sign to enable the complaint to proceed.

Where the patient is incapable of providing consent due to illness or accident, it may still be possible to deal with the complaint. Please provide the precise details of the circumstances which prevent this in your covering letter.

Please note that we are unable to discuss any issue relating to someone else without their express permission, which must be in writing unless the circumstances above apply.

We may still need to correspond direct with the patient or may be able to deal directly with the third party and this depends on the wording of the authority provided.

If you are Dissatisfied with the Outcome

If you are unhappy with the outcome of your complaint, you have the right to approach the Ombudsman. The contact details are:

The Parlimentary & Health Service Ombudsman,
Millbank Tower,
Millbank,
London,
SW1P 4QP

Tel: 0345 015 4033
Website: www.ombudsman.org.uk

The Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) can provide confidential advice and support, helping to guide you through different public and local services. The contact details are:

Patient Experience Team,
Suffolk CCGs,
Endeavour House,
8 Russell Road,
Ipswich,
IP1 2BX

Tel: 0800 389 6819 (option 2)
Email: complaints@suffolk.nhs.uk