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Formal NHS complaints rise by 8%

View profile for Judith Thomas-Whittingham
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The Guardian has recently reported that in the last year, written complaints to the NHS rose by more than 8%, with the service receiving more than 3,000 complaints a week.

The NHS Information Centre have reported that in 2011-2012 they received 162,129 written complaints from patients or their families, an increase of 12,364 from the previous year.

Almost 50,000 of the complaints in England related to ‘all aspects of clinical treatment,’ 12,000 complaints were about the ‘attitude of the staff’ and approximately 10,000 concerned ‘communication to patients.’

Mr Gwynne, Shadow Health Minister said: ‘This is yet another worrying sign of an NHS heading in the wrong direction. It will not come as a surprise that more and more patients are writing formal complaints. The government is throwing the NHS into chaos with an unnecessary reorganisation of the back office, costing over £3 billion, that has taken eyes off patient care.’

However, the Government have maintained that the increase was due to the way NHS organisations submit information about their complaints.

By Sarah Fairclough