Comments, Complaints and Suggestions

What do you think of our service?

Our aim is to provide the highest level of care for all our patients. We will always be willing to listen if there is any way that you think that we can improve the service we provide.

Making a Complaint

If you have any complaints or concerns about the service that you have received from the doctors or staff working for Cumbria Medical Services, please let us know.

We hope that most problems can be sorted out easily and quickly, 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.

The Practice Manager, Christine Lightfoot will be pleased to deal with any complaint. She will explain the procedure to you and make sure that your concerns are dealt with promptly. You can make your complaint:

In person – ask to speak to Christine Lightfoot

In writing – some complaints may be easier to explain in writing – please give as much information as you can, then send your complaint to the practice for the attention of Christine Lightfoot as soon as possible.

Cumbria Medical Services, Lower Floor, Cockermouth Community Hospital, Cockermouth, CA13 9HT

What we will do

Our complaints procedure is designed to make sure that we settle any complaints as quickly as possible.
We will acknowledge your complaint within 3 working days offering the opportunity for a discussion, either face to face or by telephone. We shall then be in a position to offer you an explanation, or a meeting with the people involved.

When we look into your complaint, we will aim to:

  • find out what happened and what went wrong
  • make it possible for you to discuss the problem with those concerned, if you would like this
  • make sure you receive an apology, where appropriate
  • Identify what we can do to make sure the problem doesn’t happen again.

At the end of the investigation your complaint will be discussed with you in detail, either in person or in writing.

Complaining on behalf of someone else
Please note that we keep strictly to the rules of medical confidentiality. If you are complaining on behalf of someone else, we have to know that you have his or her permission to do so. A note signed by the person concerned will be needed, unless they are incapable (because of illness) of providing this.

What you can do next

We hope that, if you have a problem, you will use our company complaints procedure. We believe that this will give us the best chance of putting right whatever has gone wrong and the opportunity to improve our practice.

If you feel you cannot raise your complaint with us or you are dissatisfied with the way we are dealing with your complaint you can take your complaint about our services to the NHS Complaints Advisory Service:

By telephone: 03003 112233

By email: [email protected]

By post: NHS England, PO Box 16738, Redditch B97 9PT

NHS Cumbria Clinical Commissioning Group also welcomes positive feedback.

If you would like someone to help you with a concern or complaint then Best Life Advocacy, based in Cumbria, provide a free service to guide and support you through the complaints process. They can help you put your complaint in writing and attend meetings with you, but they do not investigate complaints.
Telephone: 03003 038037

If you remain dissatisfied with the responses to your complaint, you have the right to ask The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman to review your case. The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman is an independent body established to promote improvements in healthcare through the assessment of the performance of those who provide a service. You can contact them on 0345 015 4033, or write to them at:

The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman
Millbank Tower

Help us get it right

We constantly try to improve the service we offer.
Please let us know when you think we have done something well or if you have any suggestions as to how we can do something better.

Some more useful information about the NHS Complaints process can be found through this link:

NHS Choices – Making a Complaint

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