Complaint Policy

Complaint Policy

 

(Version 4, Updated 11th December 2023)

 

Confidentiality Notice

This document and the information contained herein is the intellectual property of Kinvara Private Hospital Ltd.

This document contains information that is privileged, confidential or otherwise protected from disclosure. It must not be used by, or its contents reproduced or otherwise copied or disclosed without explicit written consent of Kinvara Private Hospital.

Document Details

This Complaint Policy applies to the supply of medical services by Kinvara Private Hospital Limited, Company Registration 11248045, of 2 Clifton Lane, Rotherham, S65 2AJ.

In the event of any inconsistency between this Complaint Policy and the contents of other documentation provided by Kinvara Private Hospital to the Patient, this Complaint Policy shall prevail.

Introduction

  1. Kinvara Private Hospital (“KPH”) prides itself on providing Patients the best available care. We recognise there may be times when expectations are not met and if you are not satisfied with the service you have received at Kinvara Private Hospital, it is your right to have your concerns investigated and to be given a full and prompt reply.
  2. By reporting concerns, you will help us make sure we have listened to what has been said and acted upon the feedback. This helps us create a culture of continuous quality improvement and improve the service we provide to Patients in the future. All complaints will be recorded in the KPH Complaint Register and learning points disseminated after every investigation.
  3. A complaint may be made by a Patient, a person acting on behalf of a Patient, or anyone who has been affected by any action/omission/decision of Kinvara Private Hospital. Where a complainant is acting on behalf of a Patient, they must provide written consent from the patient before the complaint procedure is initiated.
  4. Where the patient has died, the complaint may be made by the named next of kin or by a person nominated by the named next of kin.
  5. The purpose of the Complaint Policy is to make it is easy for Patients or the person acting on their behalf, who are dissatisfied with our service, to lodge a complaint or provide constructive criticism.
  6. The Complaint Policy applies to both clinical and non-clinical complaints, and complaints about the performance of healthcare professionals working in KPH.
  7. Patients can request a copy of the Complaint Policy at anytime and it may also be downloaded from the KPH website.
  8. Employees or healthcare professionals are not authorised to make any statements accepting responsibility or admitting liability, until the complaint has been fully investigated and statements have been authorised by Kinvara Private Hospital.
  9. Complaints about the service of another clinic / hospital will not be investigated by KPH.
  10. We are aware that Patients may act out of character in times of frustration or distress and that there may have been upsetting or distressing circumstances leading up to a complaint. However, Patients who are aggressive, abusive, discriminatory, unreasonable or acting in a vexatious manner will not be tolerated.
  11. Complaints relating to issues more than 6 months old will not be investigated.
  12. Kinvara Private Hospital reserves the right to decline Patients for treatment following an initial consultation. Reasons for this may include (but are not limited to);
    1. The Patient has made an unfounded complaint regarding their consultation or expressed dissatisfaction with their consultation.
    2. The Patient has posted misleading / false statements about KPH or the Surgeon online.
    3. The Patient has made an unfounded complaint regarding the pre-operative process.
    4. The Patient has been uncooperative.
    5. The Patient has used language that is considered abusive, intimidating, discriminatory or violent.
    6. The Patient refuses to engage in a second consultation at the request of the Surgeon.

The Patient will be informed of the decision and will not be permitted to use the Complaint Procedure to challenge the decision of the Surgeon or KPH.

  1. Kinvara Private Hospital Complaint Procedure has three stages:
    • Stage 1 – Local Resolution
    • Stage 2 – Internal Appeal
    • Stage 3 – Independent External Adjudication

COMPLAINT PROCEDURE

Stage 1 – Local Resolution

  1. At the Local Resolution stage, we aim to investigate and respond as quickly as possible.
  2. If a Patient makes a verbal complaint, KPH will make every effort to resolve the complaint at that moment. If the matter cannot be resolved, the Patient will be instructed to complete the Complaint Form, in order to initiate the Complaint Procedure.
  3. The Complaint Form provides a structured format for the submission of a complaint and ensures all the necessary information is received, thereby facilitating timely and thorough investigation.
  4. If the Patient makes a written complaint, the KPH Admin Team will direct the Patient to submit their complaint via the Complaint Form on KPH website. Kinvara Private Hospital Admin Team will provide assistance if the patient has any difficulty in in completing the Complaint Form.
  5. If the complaint is about a Surgeon / Independent Practitioner, Patients should address their complaint to both KPH and the Consultant / Independent Practitioner.
  6. Upon receipt of the completed Complaint Form, KPH will send an email acknowledgement to the Patient within three working days.
  7. To determine if the complaint raised by the Patient is valid and can be resolved in Stage 1, KPH will consider 4 factors;
    • What exactly is the complaint? It is important we have a clear understanding of the complaint and may request further information from the Patient to get a full understanding of the issue.
    • What does the Patient wish to achieve from the complaint? The outcome must be clarified by the Patient at the outset in order to establish expectations, and whether they can be satisfied.
    • Can the expected outcome be achieved in Stage 1 e.g. by way of apology or by another means?
    • Can it be resolved immediately?
  1. If a Patient wishes to have an in-person meeting in the first instance to resolve their complaint, KPH will endeavour to arrange a meeting between the Patient and a representative. If, for whatever reason, KPH is unable to arrange a meeting, the investigation will still continue and a full written response will be provided to the Patient (see below). KPH reserves the right to decline an in-person meeting.
  2. Kinvara Private Hospital will send a full written response within twenty working days of receipt of the complaint. In exceptional circumstances, where there are clear and justified reasons for doing so, KPH may extend the timescale for Local Resolution and will explain the reason(s) for the delay.
  3. Patients that are unhappy with the written response may request escalation of their complaint to Stage 2 – Internal Appeal. This request must be made in writing within four weeks of the date of the written response.

Stage 2 – Internal Appeal

  1. A complaint can be escalated to Stage 2 Internal Appeal under the following circumstances (includes but are not limited to);
    1. The Patient feels local resolution has not adequately addressed the complaint.
    2. There is a clear, articulable failure to understand the root cause of the problem.
    3. The complaint relates to;
      • a pattern or recurring problems or systemic issues that may warrant escalation.
      • complex issues and a detailed investigation is warranted.
      • dissatisfaction with the outcome of surgery.
      • a personal injury claim.
      • issues that have been identified as serious or high risk.
      • violation of hospital policies or healthcare regulations.
  2. Patients that request escalation of their complaint to Stage 2, must provide clear articulable reasons for escalation, in writing to KPH. These reasons should be logical, transparent, and easily understandable, allowing KPH to comprehend why the complaint warrants further investigation. Kinvara Private Hospital reserves the right to determine what is considered ‘clear articulable reasons’, and accept or refute the request for escalation to Stage 2.
  3. Stage 2 will be conducted by a member of the Senior Management Team (who has not been involved with Stage 1), who will form an independent view of the complaint and respond directly to the Patient, either accepting or refuting the complaint.
  4. When a complaint has been escalated to Stage 2, the Patient will be sent an email acknowledgement within three working days, from the date they notified KPH of their wish to escalate to Stage 2.
  5. Patients will be provided with a full and final response as soon as possible but no later than twenty working days from the date they notified KPH of their wish to escalate to Stage 2.
  6. In exceptional circumstances, where there are clear and justified reasons for doing so, KPH may extend the timescale for Stage 2 and will explain the reason(s) for the delay.
  7. If the complaint relates to the outcome of surgery, the responsible Surgeon will be asked to provide a response. If the Surgeon is unable to provide a response within twenty days because of personal circumstances, or is precluded from providing a response on the advice of their medical indemnity insurance provider, the Patient will be informed. In the case of the former, the Patient will be given an indication of when the Surgeon will provide a response.
  8. If the complaint relates to a personal injury claim or damage to property, Kinvara Private Hospital reserves the right to refute any admission of liability.
  9. If the Patient indicates their intent to start litigation at any point during Stage 1 or 2, or KPH receives a ‘Letter of Claim’ or ‘Letter of Notification’, KPH reserves the right to terminate the Complaint Procedure and will inform the Patient.

Stage 3 – Independent External Adjudication

  1. Patients that remain dissatisfied with the outcome of Stage 2 Internal Investigation, have recourse to Independent External Adjudication.
  2. In this event, Patients must send written confirmation to KPH of their wish to seek Independent External Adjudication, within four weeks of the date of the final written response of the Stage 2 investigation. Escalation to Independent External Adjudication is only permissible if Stage 1 and 2 have been completed by KPH.

For Stage 3, Independent External Adjudication, Patients must write to;

Dispute Resolution Ombudsman
Premier House, First Floor, 1-5 Argyle Street, Stevenage, Hertfordshire, SG1 2AD
Tel: 0333 241 3209
Email: info@disputeresolutionombudsman.org

Patients may also complain to the;

Care Quality Commission
Citygate, Gallowgate, Newcastle, NE1 4PA
Tel: 0300 061 6161
Email: enquiries@cqc.org.uk

Management of Persistent Complainants or Those Behaving Unreasonably

  1. Kinvara Private Hospital is committed to dealing with all complaints in a fair and impartial manner. However, KPH reserves the right to take action against Patients that demonstrate unreasonable behaviour, that hinders the consideration of a complaint because of the frequency or nature of the complainant’s contact with the clinic.

Examples of unreasonable behaviour includes, but is not limited to, a patient who:

  • refuses to articulate their complaint or specify the grounds of a complaint or the outcomes sought by raising the complaint, despite offers of assistance.
  • refuses to cooperate with the complaint investigation process.
  • refuses to accept that certain issues are not within the scope of the complaint procedure.
  • insists on the complaint being dealt with in ways that are incompatible with the complaint procedure or with good practice.
  • introduces trivial or irrelevant information that they expect to be taken into account.
  • raises numerous unrelated questions and insists they are fully answered, often immediately and to their own timescales.
  • makes unjustified complaints about staff who are trying to deal with issues they have raised and seeks to have them replaced.
  • changes the basis of the complaint as the investigation proceeds.
  • repeatedly makes the same complaint (despite previous investigations or responses concluding that the complaint has no merit or has been addressed).
  • refuses to accept the findings of the investigation despite proper implementation and completion of the complaint procedure.
  • seeks an unrealistic outcome or expresses an intention to pursue the complaint until that outcome is achieved.
  • makes excessive demands on KPH staff by frequent, lengthy and complicated contact with staff regarding the complaint, in person, in writing, email or by telephone while the complaint is being dealt with.
  • uses abusive, discriminatory or intimidating language.
  • knowingly provides false information.
  • publishes false or misleading information on social media or other public forums.
  1. Patients should try to limit their communication with KPH that relates to their complaint, while the complaint is being progressed. It is not helpful if repeated correspondence is sent (either by letter, phone or email), as it could delay the outcome being reached.
  2. The decision on whether a Patient is behaving unreasonably will ultimately rest with the Senior Management Team and when possible, a team member will discuss any concerns with the Patient. If the unreasonable behaviour continues, the Senior Management Team will write to the Patient explaining which aspect of their behaviour is unreasonable and what action KPH will be take. This may include, but is not limited to;
  • Requesting that they communicate with KPH by email only.
  • Requesting that they make contact with one particular named member of staff.
  • Restricting their telephone calls to specific days and times.
  • Requesting they adhere to a ‘Code of Conduct’ that provides guidance on future behaviour.
  • Terminating contact with immediate effect.
  1. KPH reserves the right to terminate contact with persistent complainants, patients that continue to demonstrate unreasonable behaviour or patients that fail to follow instructions as requested by the Senior Management Team.

Clinician and Provider Disclaimer

  1. It is important to remember that while all Surgeons and healthcare professionals must meet certain education, training and experience to practice at KPH, the hospital is not responsible for, nor agrees with, some of their opinions expressed on their personal platforms such as social media sites.

01709 464200

enquiries@kinvarahospital.co.uk 

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