In this practice we take complaints very seriously and try to ensure that all our patients are pleased with their experience of our service. When clients complain, they are dealt with courteously and promptly so that the matter is resolved as quickly as possible. The procedure is based on these objectives.
Our aim is to react to complaints in the way in which we would want our complaint about a service to be handled. We learn from every mistake that we make and we respond to customers’ concerns in a caring and sensitive way.
Please mention any concerns in the first instance to your dentist or contact firstname.lastname@example.org
If a patient complains on the telephone or at the reception desk, we will listen to their complaint and offer to refer him or her to email@example.com immediately. If the Complaints Manager is not available at the time, then the patient will be told when they will be able to talk to the dentist 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 or if the patient does not wish to wait to discuss the matter, arrangements will be made for someone else to deal with it.
If the patient complains in writing the letter will be passed on immediately to the Complaints Manager. If a complaint is about any aspect of clinical care or associated charges it will normally be referred to the dentist, unless the patient does not want this to happen.
We will acknowledge the patient’s complaint in writing and enclose a copy of this code of practice 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. If the patient does not wish to meet us, then we will attempt to talk to them on the telephone. If we are unable to investigate the complaint within ten 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 clients are not satisfied with the result of our procedure then a concern may be raised in one of the following ways:
If you have already made a formal approach to the practice, and the problem has not been resolved, you can contact the Dental Complaints Service (DCS). The DCS provides a free and impartial service to help private dental patients and dental professionals to settle complaints about private dental care fairly and efficiently. The DCS can deal with your complaint if you would like an apology, a refund or a contribution to the cost of further treatment. They cannot deal with claims for compensation, or with complaints about dental plans.
The Dental Complaints Service.
The Lansdowne Building, 2 Lansdowne Road, Croydon, Greater London. CR9 2ER.
Telephone: 0845 612 0540
If the problem is so serious that you think the care provided at the practice could be a risk to their patients, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) would like to know about it. CQC cannot investigate individual complaints, but its inspectors use information when they inspect services to make sure that they are meeting quality and safety standards.
You can contact The Care Quality Commission (CQC) who regulates private and NHS dental care services in England by calling 03000 616161 or visit www.cqc.org.uk
If the problem is so serious that you think the dental professional could be a risk to other patients, you should contact the General Dental Council (GDC), which regulates dental professionals in the UK. If the issue is serious enough, the GDC can stop individual dentists from practising. The GDC does not get involved in complaints that are being managed locally. It does not resolve complaints or award compensation.
The General Dental Council
37 Wimpole Street, London, W1M 8DQ
Telephone: 0845 222 4141