Policies & Procedures


Complaints Procedure

How to Complain

We hope that most problems can be sorted out easily and quickly, often at the time they arise and with the person concerned.  If your problem cannot be sorted out in this way and you wish to make a complaint, please let us know as soon as possible as this will enable us to establish what happened more easily.

We have a complaint form for your convenience – please ask for this at Reception or it can be downloaded from our website.

You don’t have to use our complaint form if you prefer to set out your complaint in your own way.  We can help you to write down your complaint if you feel you need help to do so.

Your complaint should be addressed to the Practice Manager who will ensure that it is investigated thoroughly as soon as possible.  We aim to report back to you within 2 weeks, although in some cases, more time may be required.

This procedure does not affect your right to make a formal complaint to the Health Authority if you wish, nor does it affect your right to seek compensation in law.

What We Will Do

We will acknowledge your complaint and look into it as soon as we can.

We will aim to:-

  • Find out what happened and what went wrong.
  • Make it possible for you to meet with and discuss your complaint with the Practice Manager or a GP partner, if you would like to.  You may bring a friend or relative with you to help with this discussion if you wish.
  • Make sure you receive an apology and explanation where this is appropriate.
  • Identify what we can do to make sure the problem does not happen again.

Complaining on Behalf of Someone Else

We ensure strict adherence to the rule of medical confidentiality.  If you wish to complain on behalf of someone else, we will need to have their written permission for you to do so.  A 3rd party consent form is available from Reception or can be downloaded from our website.

Complaining to the Primary Care Trust

If you do not wish to complain directly to the Practice, you can complain to the local  Patient Relations service.  They will advise you on how to take forward your complaint.  They can be contacted on 0800 0688 000. You can also write directly to the local Primary Care Trust and ask them to act as intermediary between you and the Practice.

Practice Complaints Procedure

We always try to provide the best service possible but there may be times when you feel this has not happened.

If you have any complaint about the service that you have received from the GPs or staff working for this practice, then you are entitled to ask for an explanation.

We operate an informal, in-house complaints procedure.  This procedure does not deal with matters of legal responsibility or compensation.  In some cases the in-house procedure is not an appropriate form of investigation, in which case you will be referred to the appropriate authority.

If you wish to do this you should write to:

The Complaints Officer
North Yorkshire and York Primary Care Trust
The Hamlet
Hornbeam Park
Harrogate HG2 8RE

If you remain dissatisfied with the outcome then you can refer the matter to the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman at:

Millbank Tower
Millbank
London
SW1P 4QP

www.ombudsman.org.uk

You may also find it helpful to contact the Independent Complaints and Advocacy Service (ICAS) for further advice and support.  They can be contacted on 0845 120 3734.

Your Medical Records – Why We Need Your Information

General

Your doctors, the practice staff and other health professionals caring for you will keep and use records about your health, treatment and care.  This is to ensure that you receive the best possible care from us.

These records may include:

  • Basic details about you, such as address and next of kin
  • Contact we have had with you, such as clinic visits
  • Notes and reports about your health
  • Any treatment or care you need
  • Information from other health professionals.

We will only keep information to support your health care.  Your records are used to guide and administer the care you receive, in order to ensure that:

  • Doctors, nurses or other healthcare professionals involved in your care have accurate information to assess your health and future care needs
  • Full information is available should you see another doctor, or be referred to a specialist or other part of the NHS
  • Anonymous statistical information may be passed to organisations with a legitimate interest, including the local PCT, universities, community safety units and research institutions.

Keeping your information confidential

Everyone working for the NHS has a legal duty to keep patient information confidential.  We maintain strict controls on our computer and paper records, for example:

  • Only staff who the GP partners have given permission to can access your health record, this is by means of a password-protected card, and they can only access the parts of your record that they need to in order to carry out their job
  • Your electronic data and paper records are not held in our clinic rooms but in a secure location
  • NHS referrals are made using secure links to our hospital colleagues
  • You have to give us your signed permission for information to be released to 3rd parties such as insurance companies

You may receive care from other organisations such as Social Services.  We may need to share some information about you so that we can all work together for your benefit.  We will only pass on information about you if there is a genuine need.  We will not disclose information without your permission unless there are exceptional circumstances, for example when the health or safety of others is at risk or where the law requires information.

Anyone who receives information from us is also under a legal obligation to keep it confidential.
We are required by law to report certain information to the appropriate authorities, for example infectious diseases such as measles or meningitis which may endanger others (but not HIV or AIDS), and where a formal court order has been issued.
Our guiding principle is that we are holding your records in strict confidence.

Access to your records

The Data Protection Act 1998 allows you to find out what information about you is held on computer and in certain manual health records.  If you want to see your health records, we will provide access within 40 days of receiving your request in writing. 
Your GP is entitled to refuse or limit access to your records if he/she considers that disclosure would cause serious harm to the mental or physical health of the patient or any other person, or result in disclosure of information about a third party without that person’s consent.

Online Access to Your Medical Records

Park Parade Surgery is working towards allowing you to have online access to your medical records. Our plan is to have this service available by 31st March 2015. You will then be able to export or print summary information from your medical record i.e. medications, allergies, adverse reactions.

Amending your record

You may ask for your record to be removed, changed, modified or deleted.  You would need to discuss the reasons for this with a GP partner.

Costs and charges

You are entitled to a printed copy of your computer records for a fee of £1 per sheet, up to a maximum charge of £10.
Photocopies of your paper records are also available for a fee of £1 per sheet, up to a maximum charge of £50.

STATEMENT OF INTENT FOR PARK PARADE SURGERY 

New contractual requirements came into force from 1 April 2014 requiring that GP Practices should make available a “statement of intent” in relation to the following IT developments: 

  • Summary Care Record (SCR)
  • GP to GP Record Transfers (GP2GP)
  • Patient Online Access to their GP medical record 

The same contractual obligations require that we have a “statement of intent” regarding these developments in place and publicised by 30 September 2014. 

Please find below details of the practice’s stance with regards to these points:- 

Summary Care Record (SCR)  

NHS England require practices to enable successful automated uploads of any changes to patient’s summary information, at least on a daily basis, to the summary care record (SCR) or have published plans in place to achieve this by 31st of March 2015. 

Having your Summary Care Record (SCR) available will help anyone treating you without your full medical record. They will have access to information about any medication you may be taking and any drugs that you have a recorded allergy or sensitivity to. Of course if you do not want your medical records to be available in this way then you will need to let us know so that we can update your record. 

Park Parade Surgery confirms that your SCR is automatically updated on at least a daily basis to ensure that your information is as up to date as it can possibly be. 

GP to GP Record Transfers

NHS England requires practices to utilise the GP2GP facility for the transfer of patient records between practices, when a patient registers or de-registers (this does not apply to temporary patient registrations). 

It is very important that you are registered with a doctor at all times. If you leave your previous practice and register with a new GP, your medical records will be removed from your previous doctor and forwarded on to your new GP via NHS England. It can take up to 2 weeks for your paper records to reach your new surgery. However, GP2GP record transfers your electronic medical record is transferred to your new practice much sooner. 

Park Parade Surgery confirms that GP2GP transfers are already active, and we send and receive patient records via this system. 

Patient Online Access to Their GP Record  

NHS England require practices to promote and offer the facility to enable patients online access to appointments, prescriptions, allergies and adverse reactions or have published plans in place to achieve this by 31st of March 2015. 

We currently offer the facility for booking and cancelling appointments and also for ordering your repeat prescriptions on-line. This is done by the clinical system on-line facility. If you do not already have a user name and password for this system – please register for on-line access at the surgery. 

ENHANCED DATA SHARING

Nowadays, electronic records are kept in all the places where you receive health care. We use a clinical system called Systm1.  This system enables us to share full electronic patient records, across different health care services involved in patient care, for example with the District Nurses.

Patients can choose whether or not they wish to share their electronic record. They do this in two ways:
– by telling every service invoved in their care if they consent to the information they record being made available to other authorised healthcare providers (sharing out)
– by telling every service involved in their care if they consent to them seeing the information they have made available (sharing in)

If you wish to dissent to us making your data available to other services involved in your care, please contact the surgery on 01423 561773.

YOUR CARE DATA

Under the powers of the Health and Social Care Act 2012 the Health and Social Care Information Centre(HSCIC) can, under certain circumstances, look at Personal Confidential Data (PCD) from GP practices without seeking patient consent. The ‘Care.Data’ service has been commissioned by NHS England and will be delivered by the HSCIC .

Data extracted from GP practices will be used for research and public health purposes and will include patient postcodes and NHS numbers but will not include patient names and so it will not be possible to identify you. Patients have the right to object to any extraction of Personal Confidential Data from their GP practice and you can contact us if you do not want your information collected by HSCIC.

The practice hopes that the link below will:

  • Help you understand the purpose of the Care.Data service.
  • Raise awareness of how your confidential data will be used by the Care.Data service.
  • Help you understand what to do if you object to the extraction of your confidential data.

Detailed information on the Care.Data service can be found at:
http://www.nhs.uk/NHSEngland/thenhs/records/healthrecords/Pages/care-data.aspx