Woodlands Medical Practice is committed to providing a safe, comfortable environment where patients and staff can be confident that best practice is being followed at all times and the safety of everyone is of paramount importance.
This Chaperone Policy adheres to local and national guidance and policy –i.e.:- ‘NCGST Guidance on the role and effective use of chaperones in Primary and Community Care settings’.
The Chaperone Policy is clearly advertised through patient information leaflets, website (when available) and can be read at the Practice upon request. A Poster is also displayed in the Practice Waiting Area.
All patients are entitled to have a chaperone present for any consultation, examination or procedure where they consider one is required. The chaperone may be a family member or friend, but on occasions a formal chaperone may be preferred.
Patients are advised to ask for a chaperone if required, at the time of booking an appointment, if possible, so that arrangements can be made and the appointment is not delayed in any way. The Healthcare Professional may also require a chaperone to be present for certain consultations.
All staff are aware of and have received appropriate information in relation to this Chaperone Policy. All trained chaperones understand their role and responsibilities and are competent to perform that role.
There is no common definition of a chaperone and their role varies considerably depending on the needs of the patient, the healthcare professional and the examination being carried out. Their role can be considered in any of the following areas:
- Emotional comfort and reassurance to patients
- Assist in examination (e.g. during IUCD insertion)
- Assist in undressing
- Act as interpreter
- Protection to the healthcare professional against allegations / attack)
Checklist for consultations involving intimate examinations
- Chaperones are most often required or requested where a male examiner is carrying out an intimate examination or procedure on a female patient, but the designation of the chaperone will depend on the role expected of them, whether participating in the procedure or providing a supportive role.
- Establish there is a genuine need for an intimate examination and discuss this with the patient and whether a formal chaperone (such as a nurse) is needed.
- Explain to the patient why an examination is necessary and give the patient an opportunity to ask questions. The chaperone would normally be the same sex as the patient and the patient will have the opportunity to decline a particular person as a chaperone, if that person is considered not acceptable for any reason.
- Offer a chaperone or invite the patient to have a family member / friend present.
- If the patient does not want a chaperone, record that the offer was made and declined in the patient’s notes.
- Obtain the patient’s consent before the examination and be prepared to discontinue the examination at any stage at the patient’s request.
- Record that permission has been obtained in the patient’s notes.
- Once the chaperone has entered the room, they should be introduced by name and the patient allowed privacy to undress / dress. Use drapes / curtains where possible to maintain dignity. There should be no undue delay prior to examination once the patient has removed any clothing.
- Explain what is being done at each stage of the examination, the outcome when it is complete and what is proposed to be done next. Keep discussion relevant and avoid personal comment.
- If a chaperone has been present, record that fact and the identity of the chaperone in the patient’s notes.
- During the examination, the chaperone may be needed to offer reassurance, remain alert to any indication of distress but should be courteous at all times.
- Record any other relevant issues or concerns in the patient’s notes, immediately following the consultation.
- Chaperones should only attend the part of the consultation that is necessary – other verbal communication should be carried out when the chaperone has left.
- Any request that the examination be discontinued should be respected.
- Healthcare professionals should note that they are at an increased risk of their actions being misconstrued or misrepresented, if they conduct intimate examinations where no other person is present.
Making a Complaint
Every patient has the right to make a complaint about the treatment or care they have received at Woodlands Medical Practice.
We understand that we may not always get everything right and, by telling us about the problem you have encountered, we will be able to improve our services and patient experience.
Who to Talk to
Most complaints can be resolved at a local level. Please speak to a member of staff if you have a complaint; our staff are trained to handle complaints. Alternatively, ask to speak to the complaint’s manager, Patricia Brown, Practice Manager.
If for any reason you do not want to speak to a member of our staff, then you can request that NHS England investigates your complaint. They will contact us on your behalf:
PO BOX 16738
A complaint can be made verbally or in writing. A complaints form is available from reception. Additionally, you can complain via email to email@example.com.
Time Frames for Complaints
The time constraint on bringing a complaint is 12 months from the occurrence giving rise to the complaint, or 12 months from the time you become aware of the matter about which you wish to complain.
The complaints manager will respond to all complaints within three business days.
We will aim to investigate and provide you with the findings as soon as we can and will provide regular updates regarding the investigation of your complaint.
Woodlands Medical Practice will investigate all complaints effectively and in conjunction with extant legislation and guidance.
Woodlands Medical Practice will ensure that all complaints are investigated with the utmost confidentiality and that any documents are held separately from the patient’s healthcare record.
Third Party Complaints
Woodlands Medical Practice allows a third party to make a complaint on behalf of a patient. The patient must provide consent for them to do so. A third-party patient complaint form is available from reception.
Woodlands Medical Practice will issue a final formal response to all complainants which will provide full details and the outcome of the complaint. We will liaise with you about the progress of any complaint.
- POhWER support centre can be contacted via 0300 456 2370
- Advocacy People gives advocacy support on 0330 440 9000
- Age UK on 0800 055 6112
- Local Council can give advice on local advocacy services
If you are dissatisfied with the outcome of your complaint from either NHS England or this organisation then you can escalate your complaint to Parliamentary Health Service Ombudsman (PHSO) at either:
Milbank Tower, Milbank
Citygate, Mosley Street
Tel: 0345 015 4033
The practice complies with the General Data Protection Regulations and Access to Medical Records legislation. Identifiable information about you will be shared with others in the following circumstances :-
1. To provide further medical treatment for you eg. from district nurses and hospital services.
2. To help you get other services eg. from the social work department. This required your consent.
3. When we have a duty to others eg. in child protection cases.
4. Anonymised patient information will also be used at local and national level to help the Health Board and Government plan services eg. for diabetic care.
If you do not wish anonymous information about you to be used in such a way, please let us know.
Reception and administration staff require access to your records in order to carry out their jobs. These members of staff are bound by the same rules of confidentiality as the medical staff.
Freedom of Information
The ICO has published a new Model Publication Scheme that all public authorities are required to adopt by 1st January 2009.
GP Earnings Statement
All GP practices are required to declare the mean earnings (e.g. average pay) for GPs working to deliver NHS services to patients at each practice. The average pay for GPs working in Woodlands Medical Practice in the last financial year was £97,644 before tax and national insurance. This is for 4 full time GPs, 2 part time GPs and 1 locum who worked in the practice for more than six months.
Patient’s rights and responsibilities
As a patient you have the right to:
- be registered with a named doctor
- change doctor if desired (but please remember that you may have to see any of the doctors if your need is urgent)
- receive emergency care
- receive appropriate drugs and medicines
- be referred for specialist or second opinion if they and GP agrees
- see your medical records or a copy, subject to certain laws
- know that by law, everyone working for the NHS must keep the contents of your medical records private. With these rights come responsibilities for the public
That means being:
- courteous to staff at all times
- as prompt as possible for all appointments
- responsible for cancelling appointments in adequate time.
PCN Mid Career Fellows
What is a PCN?
PCNs bring together a range of local organisations and groups), including GP practices, community services, social care and the voluntary sector to offer coordinated health and social care to their local populations.
What is the purpose of a PCN?
A key focus of the PCNs is helping residents to look after their own health. By intervening at an earlier stage and equipping them with the skills to manage their own health, there will be less likelihood of them needing treatment. The organisations within the PCNs will work together to create happier, healthier communities and reduce the gap in healthy life expectancy across Nottingham City.
Which PCN is my practice in?
There are eight PCNs across Nottingham City and each one is led by a Clinical Director. Your practice is part of the Ashfield North Primary Care Network.
What is a Phoenix PCN mid-career fellow?
The Nottinghamshire General Practice Phoenix Programme is the local workforce support organisation for GPs across Nottingham, Nottinghamshire and Bassetlaw. They provide career advice and development opportunities for colleagues at any stage, ranging from GP training into retirement. They are enabling qualified GPs from the area, in the role of Phoenix PCN mid-career Fellow to undertake quality improvement project work within the PCN. This project work will focus on improving current systems, pathways and overall patient care in your local area. For the GP fellow to complete this project work they may contact you to find out your opinions regarding current services however, you can decline to be involved at any stage if you prefer.
Policy on violent or abusive patients
We aim to treat our patients courteously at all times and expect our patients to treat our staff in a similarly respectful way. We take seriously any threatening, abusive or violent behaviour against any of our staff or patients.
The practice considers aggressive behaviour to be any personal, abusive and/or aggressive comments, cursing and/or swearing, physical contact and/or aggressive gestures.
If a patient is violent or abusive towards staff or other patients, or damages property, they will be warned to stop their behaviour. If they persist, we may exercise our right to take action to have them removed, immediately if necessary, from our list of patients and in the case of actual physical abuse, the matter will be reported to the police as an assault.
Summary Care Record
There is a new Central NHS Computer System called the Summary Care Record (SCR). It is an electronic record which contains information about the medicines you take, allergies you suffer from and any bad reactions to medicines you have had.
Why do I need a Summary Care Record?
Storing information in one place makes it easier for healthcare staff to treat you in an emergency, or when your GP practice is closed.
This information could make a difference to how a doctor decides to care for you, for example which medicines they choose to prescribe for you.
Who can see it?
Only healthcare staff involved in your care can see your Summary Care Record.
How do I know if I have one?
Over half of the population of England now have a Summary Care Record. You can find out whether Summary Care Records have come to your area by looking at our interactive map or by asking your GP
Do I have to have one?
No, it is not compulsory. If you choose to opt out of the scheme, then you will need to complete a form and bring it along to the surgery. You can use the form at the foot of this page.
Who has access to patient information
We respect your right to privacy and keep all your health information confidential and secure. It is important that the NHS keeps accurate and up-to-date records about your health and treatment so that those treating you can provide the best possible care. We have a fully computerised medical record system which means information about your healthcare is held on a secure server. You have the right to know what information we hold about you. Please enquire at the surgery about how to arrange to view a copy of your record.
If you are referred to a hospital specialist you are also welcome to request a copy of the referral letter. NHS Connecting for Health is currently developing the National Care Records Service, which will create a Summary Care Record (SCR) for each individual patient (by 2010), to be held centrally. At this pilot stage the record is limited to current medication, known allergies and adverse reactions.
Eventually the aim is to enable healthcare staff jointly involved in your care, such as your GP and your hospital consultant, to easily access and share information through this national record. You have the right to withdraw your consent to information being shared. In future you will be able to access your own record online at www.healthspace.nhs.uk.