We want our service to meet your expectations. If you have a concern or complaint about any aspect of our service, we want to know what mistakes we made and identify how we can improve to ensure that we meet your expectations in future. Our aim is to learn from any feedback we receive and improve the service we provide to our patients.
We will deal with complaints courteously and promptly and aim to resolve the matter as quickly as possible.

Making a complaint

We hope that most problems can be sorted out quickly and easily, often at the time they arise and with the person concerned. If your problem cannot be sorted out in this way and you wish to make a complaint, we would like you to let us know as soon as possible – ideally, within a matter of days or at most a few weeks – because this will enable 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
  • Within 12 months of discovering that you have a problem

If you wish to make a complaint or simply let us know how we could have done better, please contactMrs Childs, our Complaints’ Manager:

  • By telephone on 01255 220322
  • By email at manager@valleydentalpractice.com
  • By letter to Mrs Childs, Valley Dental Practice, 130 Valley Road, Clacton on sea, Essex, CO15 6Lx
  • In person.

If you contact the practice to make a complaint and the Complaints’ Manager is not available, we will arrange a convenient time for them to contact you. We will ask you for brief details of your complaint so that the Complaints’ Manager can gather any useful information before contacting you. You will be given a copy of the notes made for the Complaints’ Manager.
If the matter requires a more immediate response, we will arrange for a senior member of the dental team to deal with it.
If your complaint is about your dental treatment or the fee charged, we will usually ask the dentist concerned to contact you, unless you do not want this.
We acknowledge all complaints in writing and enclose a copy of this code of practice as soon as possible, normally within 3 working days.

What we shall do

We will offer to discuss the complaint with you and will ask how you would like to be kept informed of developments – by telephone, letters or e-mail or by face-to-face meetings. We will let you know how we will deal with your complaint and the likely time that the investigation will take to complete. If you do not wish to discuss the complaint further, we will still let you know the expected timescale for completing the investigation.
We will investigate your complaint promptly within 10 working days or, if the issue is complex, within 6 months and, as far as reasonably practicable, will let you know how our investigation is progressing.
When we have completed our investigation, we will provide you with a full written report, unless you have told us that you do not wish for further communication. The report will explain how we considered the complaint, the conclusions we reached for each part of your complaint, details of any remedial action we have taken and whether further action is needed.

Complaining on behalf of someone else

Please note that we keep strictly to the rules of confidentiality. If you are complaining on behalf of someone else, we have to know that you have permission to do so. A note signed by the person concerned will be needed, unless they are incapable (due to physical or mental illness or are a child under 16 years) of providing this.

Records

We keep proper and comprehensive records of any complaints that we receive and the action we have taken following investigation. We review these records regularly to ensure that we recognise our mistakes and take every opportunity to improve our service.

If you are not satisfied

We hope that, if you have a problem, you will make use of our practice complaints procedure. We believe this will provide the best chance of putting right whatever has gone wrong and an opportunity to improve our practice. However. this does not affect your right to complain to the Dental Complaints Service, if you feel you cannot raise your complaint with us or you are dissatisfied with the result of our investigation. If you wish further advice you should contact:

For patients who have received private treatment

Dental Complaints Service
37 Wimpole Street
London
W1G 8DQ

T: 0208 253 0800
W: https://dcs.gdc-uk.org/

For patient with a Denplan payment plan

Denplan Clinical Mediation Service
Simplyhealth House
Victoria Road
Winchester
SO23 7RG

T: 0800 169 7220
E-mail: clinicalmediationservice@denplan.co.uk

You may also like to contact the General Dental Council for more advice

General Dental Council
37 Wimpole Street
London
W1G 8DQ

T: 0207 167 6000