Posted on 12/11/2012

NHS Complaints Up 50%

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Complaints up 50% from previous year

According to The Daily Telegraph doctors have been “careless and insincere” when talking to patients, with The Independent reporting that “complaints about NHS not acknowledging mistakes ‘up by 50%’”. Covering the latest annual report, published by the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman, an independent body, focussing on how the NHS handles complaints, the report shows a sharp increase in the number of complaints that institutions or individuals within the NHS have failed to acknowledge. The figure is up 50% from last year.

A 42% rise in complaints about ‘inadequate remedies’ was noted, as well as a lack of apologies. More complaints were also received from patients ‘unfairly struck off’ GP lists after a disagreement or dispute.

Featuring a number of stories about patients left dissatisfied with the NHS, the report includes shocking revelations including that of a man accused of acting like a “baby” by a surgeon when expressing his concern about receiving general anaesthetic. The report also features a letter to a bereaved daughter from the NHS stating that “death is rarely an ideal situation for anyone”.

Dame Julia Mellow, The Ombudsman, said “A poor response to a complaint can add to the problems of someone who is unwell, struggling to take care of others, or grieving. The NHS needs to get better at listening to patients and their families and responding to their concerns.”

The report goes on to state that the proper handling of complaints, needs to be ‘embedded’ into the heart of the NHS.

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