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Handling complaints in hospitals

Handling complaints in hospitals

Health Policy 31(1): 17-27

To find out about complaints procedures in hospitals in North-Holland and to determine to what extent they function independently. All 21 hospitals were visited between the spring of 1992 and the autumn of 1993. Before the visit took place the hospital management had to complete and return a questionnaire relating to the complaints procedure in that hospital. All except two hospitals had rules for dealing with complaints. In 18 hospitals there was a complaints committee; in 12 of these the management was not--or was no longer--involved. The element of independence was expressed in a great variety of ways. In a quarter of the hospitals complaints were often not dealt with within two months. The situation with regard to complaints procedures in hospitals in North-Holland is definitely improving. Some hospitals, however, are much more successful than others in meeting the criteria for an adequate complaints procedure. There is room for improvement in two particular areas; complaints should be handled more promptly and independently.

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Accession: 046211396

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PMID: 10140360

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