Complaints Policy and Procedure

In this practice, we take complaints very seriously and try to ensure that all patients are pleased with their experience of our services. When patients complain, they are dealt with courteously and promptly so that the matter is resolved as quickly as possible.

If you have a complaint or concern about the service you have received from the dentist or any of the staff working at this practice, please let us know. We operate a practice complaints procedure for dealing with complaints. Our complaints system meets national criteria.

We hope that most problems can be resolved easily and quickly, often at the time they arise and with the person concerned. If your problem cannot be sorted out this way and you wish to make a complaint, our team will respond to your complaint within three working days, enabling us to establish
what happened more easily. If it is not possible to do that, please let us have details of your complaint within 12 months of the incident that caused the problem.

Complaints should be addressed to Sarah Pead – Practice Manager, or Sally Biddlecombe – Deputy Complaints Manager. You may ask for an appointment in order to discuss your concerns. We will explain the complaints procedure to you and will ensure that your concerns are dealt with promptly.
It will be a great help if you are as specific as possible about your complaint.

What shall we do:

Complaints made to the practice

The person responsible for dealing with any complaints about the service is the Practice Manager.

If a patient complains on the telephone or at the reception desk, we will listen to their complaint and offer to refer them to the Practice Manager or the Deputy Complaints Manager. The member of staff will take brief details of the complaint and pass them on. If we cannot arrange this within a reasonable period or if the patient does not wish to wait to discuss the matter, arrangements will be made for someone to deal with it.

If the patient complains in writing the letter will be passed on immediately to the Practice Manager.

If a complaint is about any aspect of clinical care or associated charges it will normally be referred to the dentist, unless the patient does not want this to happen.

We will acknowledge the patient’s complaint and feedback within three working days. You will be invited to discuss your concerns; we will seek to investigate the complaint within the agreed response period of the complaint being received to explain the circumstances which led to the complaint. If we are unable to investigate the complaint within this agreed time period, we will notify the patient, giving reasons for the delay and a likely period within which the investigation will be completed.

We will confirm the decision about the complaint in writing immediately after completing our investigation. This will be within 14 days of the complaint received.

Proper and comprehensive records are kept of any complaint received.

Forward Dental Care welcomes all complaints and feedback; any patient who makes a complaint will not be adversely treated due to having complained. If you do not wish to complain directly to the Practice, you can address your complaint directly to the relevant body.

Should a patient make a complaint or claim, we may need to provide information about the patient, and treatment they have received, to insurers, indemnifiers or legal advisers.

Complaining on behalf of someone else

Please note that we keep strictly to the rules of clinical confidentiality. If you are complaining on behalf of someone else, we must know that you have their permission to do so. A note signed by the person concerned will be needed, unless they are incapable (because of physical and mental
illness) of providing this.

Complaining to the Local Integrated Care Board (ICB) formerly NHS England

We hope that if you have a problem, you will use our practice complaints procedure. We believe this will give us the best chance of putting right whatever has gone wrong and an opportunity to improve our practice. This does not affect your right to approach the ICB if you feel you cannot
raise your complaint with us, or you are dissatisfied with the result of our investigation. Should you wish to make a direct complaint to the ICB or other external body please contact:

If you want to make a complaint about primary care services to the commissioner you will now contact NHS Somerset Integrated Care Board instead of NHS England.

You can do this by:

Telephone: 08000 851 067

E-mail: [email protected]

Writing to us at:
NHS Somerset
BA22 8HR
Parliamentary & Health Service Ombudsman
Millbank Tower
Telephone: 0345 15 4033

Dental Complaints Service
37 Wimpole Street
Telephone: 0845 222 4141 or 020 7887 3800

General Dental Council
37 Wimpole Street
Telephone: 0845 222 4141 or 020 7887 3800

You can also contact the Care Quality Commission (CQC) with any complaints, they regulate private dental care services in England by calling 03000 616161.