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St Nicholas Hospice Care is keen to receive any communication about its services and activities. Complaints, compliments and feedback are a valid and important way of monitoring the organisation and an excellent way to deliver improvements and ensure good practice continues.
The Hospice believes any concern or complaint it receives – both informal and formal – should be responded to, and any actions, practice and systems are effectively handled.
We believe to be a successful organisation we must see complaints or concerns as an opportunity to restore the Hospice’s image as a fair and honest organisation that listens to service users.
We approach all feedback positively, treating those who complain or praise services in an open and helpful manner, and provide fair and equitable actions that improve services or give thanks for compliments.
Duty of Candour
Duty of Candour is covered in Regulation 20 of the Health and Social Care Act. This regulation ensures that providers of health and social care services are open and transparent with people who use services and other ‘relevant persons’ (people acting lawfully on their behalf) in relation to care and treatment.
It has specific requirements that providers must follow when things go wrong with care and treatment, including informing people about the incident, providing reasonable support, providing truthful information and an apology.
Staff will ensure they:
- · are open and candid about any and all incidents involving the health, safety and clinical care of people and their families, who use our services;
- · notify patients of any incidents involving them at the earliest possible opportunity;
- · inform patients and their families about safety incidents that affect them;
- · provide appropriate apologies;
- · have kept all persons involved informed about any investigation and are supported to deal with the consequences.
People themselves or a representative e.g. family member, friend, Member of Parliament or other agency on behalf of the person, can raise complaints and concerns. When making a complaint on behalf of another, it is important that the person is acting with the knowledge and consent of the person concerned. If there is any doubt, the person concerned should be asked to give written consent.
Complaints can be made by a person acting on behalf of a patient who:
- · has died
- · is a child without capacity (Under 12 Years) or
- · is unable by reason of physical or mental incapacity to make their own complaint.
In the case of a person who has died or who is incapable, their representative must be a relative or other person who, in the opinion of a clinical manager or head of service, had or has a “sufficient interest” in the service user’s welfare and is a suitable person to act as representative.
In the case of a child, a suitable representative would normally be a parent, guardian or other adult person who has care of the child or one who is authorised by the local authority/voluntary organisation in the case of children in care.
A complaint can be received and investigated without consent but can impact how much is fed back in the findings. For the complainant to get the full outcome of the investigation, we will ensure:
· consent is obtained from the person;
o who is at the centre of the complaint e.g. patient, carer or
o with legal authority to make decisions on the persons behalf
· consent is given freely;
- · they understand the consent is for the release of information back to the complainant, not for our benefit as we have a legal basis to access their information for investigative purposes;
- · decisions are logged on Radar – the consent can be written, verbal or received by email but must be recorded.
To ensure consent is valid we will:
- · make contact with the data subject using the details we have recorded for them (telephone, mobile, address, email);
- · explain what they are consenting to including confirming the complainants details;
- · record time, date and method of gaining consent in Radar;
- · record any comments the data subject makes about the consent; and,
- · if the complainant is not relying on consent, ensure you see a copy of the legal basis they have.
The complainant will (if they choose to have feedback):
- · have a clear explanation of where errors were made or not (best practice and medical guidance may dictate how somethings are carried out that complainants do not agree with)
- · have an apology for anything that was done incorrectly
- · have an explanation of how things are going to change
- · have information of where further support or queries can be sent.
- Reports should describe the key findings referencing the evidence for each finding.
A final summary should also include an action plan stating:
· issues identified (lack of training, equipment unavailable)
· action taken (or planned) to avoid recurrence
· identify any risk assessments that need to be reviewed or undertaken
· date action to be completed
· name / designation of lead person responsible for implementing action.
Format of compliments:
- · Card
- · Verbal
- · Phone
- · Web Form
- · Small Gift (under £20).
It is important to share compliments with staff and celebrate good work. Staff will share:
- · any emails with all personal information removed
- · any cards with personal information redacted
- · verbal contacts without revealing the personal information
- · feedback from the web form (they are generally anonymous)
- · photographs of gifts with personal information removed.
Feedback can be collated in many different ways and purposes. Normally the information is needed to understand if services are meeting expectations but it can also be used to measure the success of a project or new process.
Your Experience, click here
Feedback, click here
Talk to a member of our staff. Phone or write to:
Clinical Services Director or Chief Executive Officer
St Nicholas Hospice Care
Bury St Edmunds
Tel 01284 766133