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Practice Charter

Your Doctor’s Responsibilities

To treat you with respect and courtesy at all times.

To treat you as an individual, and to discuss with you the care and treatment we can provide.

To give you full information on the services we offer.

To give you the most appropriate care by suitably qualified staff.

To provide you with emergency care when you need it.

To refer you to a consultant acceptable to you when necessary.

To give you access to your health records, subject to any limitations in the law.


Your Responsibilities As A Patient

To treat all staff with respect and courtesy at all times.

To tell us if you are unsure about the treatment we are offering you.

To ask for a home visit only when the patient is unable to attend the medical centre through illness or infirmity.

To request such a visit if at all possible before 10.00am.

To ask for an out of hours visit only when necessary.

To keep your appointments and contact the medical centre in advance if you cannot.

To be punctual for appointments and to make a separate appointment for each member of the family wishing to see the doctor.

Not to expect a prescription from every consultation with a doctor. There may be other options for treatment.

To take medicines according to the instructions and to only ask for a repeat prescription if you need one.

To let us know when you change your address or telephone number.


Help Us To Help You

Our aim is to offer our patients a fast, efficient and friendly service. However, to enable us to do this we require some help from yourselves.

1. Please do not request home visits unless you are housebound or genuinely too ill to attend the surgery.

2. If you have several problems you wish to discuss with the doctor, please ask for a longer appointment. Hurried consultations are unsatisfactory for both doctor and patient alike.

3. The out-of-hours service is for emergencies and urgent problems which cannot wait until the following day to be seen. Please do not abuse this service.

4. If you are unable to attend an appointment, please cancel as early as possible, as this frees the appointment for someone else.

5. We always welcome suggestions as to any changes we can make to improve patient care and the services we offer. If you have any suggestions, please let us know by putting your idea in writing to the practice manager.

Consent

Everyone aged 16 or over is presumed to be competent to give consent for themselves, unless the opposite is demonstrated. If a child under the age of 16 has “sufficient understanding and intelligence to enable him/her to understand fully what is proposed” (known as Gillick Competence), then he/she will be competent to give consent for him/herself.
Young people aged 16 and 17, and legally ‘competent’ younger children, may therefore sign consent forms for themselves, but may like a parent to countersign as well.
If the child is not able to give consent for him/herself, someone with parental responsibility may do so on his/her behalf by signing accordingly on the consent form.

Confidentiality

All patient information is considered to be confidential and we comply fully with the Data Protection Act. All employees have access to this information in relation to their role and have signed a confidentiality agreement. Information may be shared, in confidence, with other NHS organisations in the interests of patient care.
CCTV is installed internally in public areas and externally for security at Summerhouse Surgery. Recordings are used entirely at the discretion of the partners including provision of images to the police or other official bodies, and will otherwise comply with the practice’s Data Protection registration.

Please note that it is the practice’s policy to record telephone calls for the purposes of patient and staff care, security, and dispute resolution. Recordings and their use will be at the partners’ discretion and will also comply with the practice’s Data Protection registration.

Access To Medical Records

Under the Data Protection Act patients have the right to see or have a copy of their medical records. In order to access the records, a consent form should be requested from the surgery and the request made in writing on the form, accompanied by the relevant fee. The fees are explained on the information sheet that accompanies the consent form and the fee varies between £10 and £50 dependent on the nature of the request and the way the records are kept.


Complaints Procedure

We always try to provide the best service possible, but there may be times when you feel this has not happened. The following information explains our in-house complaints procedure, drawn up to respond to patient grievances. Our practice procedure is not able to deal with questions of legal liability or compensation. We hope you will use it to allow us to look into and, if necessary, correct any problems that you have identified, or mistakes that have been made. If you use this procedure it will not affect your right to complain to the Health Service Authority. Please note that we have to respect our duty of confidentiality to patients and a patient’s consent will be necessary if a complaint is not made by the patient in person. If you wish to make complaint, please telephone or write to our practice manager. Full details will be taken and a decision made on how best to undertake the investigation.

We believe it is important to deal with complaints swiftly, so you will be offered an appointment for a meeting to discuss the details within 40 days. Occasionally it may take longer, but we will keep you informed throughout. You may bring a friend or relative with you to the meeting. We will try to address your concerns, provide you with an explanation and discuss any action that may be needed.


Comments and Suggestions

The practice endeavours to provide a friendly and efficient service to all our patients. We welcome suggestions on how we can improve our services to you and a suggestion box is provided at each surgery for this purpose. Suggestions for improvements can also be made by completing the form here.

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