MORE than a year after lodging a formal complaint about her GP surgery, exasperated patient Clare Molyneux is still awaiting a response.
She has repeatedly chased up the complaint about Waterfoot Group of Doctors, which should have been answered within 35 days, but says several promises of an imminent resolution have been broken NHS England, which has taken over the handling of the complaint, said it was ‘really sorry for the length of time it has taken to reach a resolution’.
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Clare, 46, an administrator for the NHS drug and alcohol service in Blackburn, said her complaint centred on a claim that doctors missed opportunities to spot rising platelet levels in her blood test results.
She said when the unusually high levels were eventually spotted, it turned out to be Coeliac Disease.
She sent a formal complaint to commissioners on May 29 last year, before receiving a letter from Greater Manchester Commissioning Support Unit (GMCSU) on July 9, saying it would aim to respond within 35 days.
There have since been numerous letters and emails back and forth, and the complaint has been passed to NHS England, but Clare has still not received a formal response.
Communications from GMCSU indicated the delays were caused by Waterfoot Surgery, as it did not send a formal response to GMCSU until May this year, she said.
Clare, of Crabtree Avenue, Waterfoot, said: “It’s ridiculous that it’s taken so long. I work in the NHS and we deal with complaints on strict time-scales.
“There would be some serious questions if it took more than a year. I’m not asking for any kind of compensation, I just want them to look at it and have an apology. I’ve kept having to chase them up and they keep promising me it’s coming. It’s absolutely appalling.”
Waterfoot Group of Doctors said it was unable to comment due to patient confidentiality.
But Carole Panteli, director of nursing and quality for NHS England in Lancashire, said: “We are aware of the problems with this ongoing complaint. We are really sorry for the length of time it’s taken to reach a resolution and we are already in touch with the patient concerned to look in to their concerns.”