Making a complaint

Vine Medical Group aims to give a friendly and professional service at all times to our patients. However, if you feel that our service has not reached these standards, please let us know.

In the first instance please talk to us, as most problems can be sorted out quickly and easily, often at the time they arise, with the person concerned and this may be the approach you try first.

Where we are not able to resolve your complaint in this way or should you wish to make a formal complaint, please do so, preferably in writing, as soon as possible after the event. Ideally this is within a few days, as it 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 there has been a problem, giving as much detail as you can.

Our complaints manager is Dr Bowerman, who can be contacted in writing at Vine Medical Group, Forest End Site, Forest End, Waterlooville, Hampshire, PO7 7AH.

If you are a registered patient you may complain about your own case. You are unable to complain about someone else’s treatment without their written authority. See the separate section on this page.

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.

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 10 further working days. If key staff are absent due to leave or illness, this period may be longer. You may then receive a formal reply in writing, or you may be invited to meet with the person(s) concerned in an 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 investigating a complaint we review what happened and why, to see if we can learn from it, and where appropriate invite you to discuss the case with those involved if you would like to do so.

Once completed, a final response will be sent to you outlining the findings.

Where your complaint involves more than one organisation (e.g. social services) we will liaise with the 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 or organisation to be dealt with.

The final response letter will include details of the result 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 observe the strict rules of medical and personal confidentiality. If you wish to make a complaint and are not the patient involved, we will require written consent from the patient to confirm that they are unhappy with their treatment and that we may communicate with a nominated spokesperson.

Please ask at reception for a complaints form which contains a suitable authority section 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, and details of any person holding a power of attorney or equivalent legal authority.

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 need to correspond directly with the patient, or communicate directly with the third party. This depends on the wording of the authority provided.

Assistance

If you require assistance raising a complaint, or you are unhappy with the response you receive, you have the right to seek advice from an independent advocate or the ombudsman.

Contact Healthwatch Hampshire by telephone on 01962 440 262, or in writing to Freepost RTHH-KGST-ZRBC, Healthwatch Hampshire, Westgate Chambers, Staple Gardens, Winchester, SO32 8SR. You can also visit them online at www.healthwatchhampshire.co.uk.

Contact the Parliamentary & Health Service Ombudsman by telephone on 0345 015 4033, or in writing to Parliamentary & Health Service Ombudsman, Millbank Tower, Millbank, London, SW1P 4QP. You can also visit them online at www.ombudsman.org.uk.

Other services

If your complaint is about a hospital, ambulance service, community service or a commissioning decision, contact the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) by email at SEHCCG.Complaints@nhs.net. Details are available on the CCG website at www.southeasternhampshireccg.nhs.uk as to the areas they are responsible for. Alternatively, you can raise a complaint with the provider of the service directly. If you require assistance with making a hospital complaint, the Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) will help. You can call them on 0800 917 6039.