Three of the region’s MPs, Steve Barclay (North East Cambridgeshire), Stewart Jackson (Peterborough) and Shailesh Vara (North West Cambridgeshire) have jointly criticised Peterborough City Hospital’s handling of complaints and are seeking urgent answers. The three MPs are concerned about the delays in response times, serious errors in correspondence and a failure on the hospital’s part to take responsibility for their actions. Mr Barclay has written to Jeremy Hunt, Secretary of State for Health, to set out the detail behind the three local MPs concerns. High level discussions with Health Ministers are planned in the next few weeks.
Mr Barclay said:
“I have supported constituents on a number of occasions in their dealings with the hospital and am deeply alarmed by their handling of complaints. In addition to their response times, their letters have included numerous inaccuracies with patients’ personal and medical information. This is unacceptable.
I have written to the Health Secretary asking him to look into my concerns and set out any assistance he can offer to alleviate the situation.”
Mr Jackson said:
“Having seen a number of late and unhelpful responses from the City Hospital’s Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS), I am very concerned about the accountability and willingness of the City Hospital to genuinely learn from its mistakes.
The complaints department needs to ensure it sympathetically responds to complaints by patients in a timely fashion and realise it isn’t just a tick box exercise of dismissing rightly held concerns by patients who expect a professional level of care.”
Mr Vara added
“I am concerned that the hospital’s complaints department is not up to the standard that the public have every right to expect which is to the detriment of patients and the hospital’s reputation.
Problems include a lack of urgency in dealing with complaints as well as a failure to provide regular updates on specific cases. This and more leads to a lack of confidence for patients and the senior management needs to urgently take action to address these concerns.”