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Parliamentary & Health Services Ombudsman consultation on principles of good complaint handling

Post date: 02/03/2015

The information within this article was correct at the time of publishing. Last updated 01/04/2019

The document Principles of Good Complaint Handling sets out the Ombudsman’s views on the key principles of good complaints handling. Although the information contained within the document is largely factual in nature, a number of issues arise from it.

There can be no one-size-fits-all approach to complaints handling, and this is particularly true of healthcare. Eighty per cent of UK dentists work in general or specialist practices, rather than in the hospital or community (salaried services) sector. About 7% are employed by hospital or community trusts. Unlike the pattern of primary medical healthcare delivery, dental practices vary in size from small, single handed practices to very large, multi-location corporate groups. The key to effective complaints handling is flexibility of approach, but within a consistent and clearly defined framework.

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