My Experience of The Priory Hospital Complaint Procedure
The person responsible for dealing with complaints against The Priory Hospital is June Fordy, Group Risk Manager, based at Priory Central Services, Leatherhead. I had dealings with both her and Dave Hall at Priory Central Services and came to the conclusion that neither can be trusted. In fact, personally I wouldn’t trust either of them as far as I could throw them. This is not just my opinion, but also that of other people who have contacted me about their experience of dealing with The Priory.
It took me several years to receive a response from The Priory. I wrote twice to the Medical Director at The Priory Hospital, Roehampton and didn’t even receive a reply. It was only as a result of this web site that The Priory agreed to consider my complaint. Despite a written assurance from Dave Hall at Priory Central Services probably two years ago, The Priory has still not addressed the main point of my complaint. The main point of my complaint being the prescribing of a high-dose experimental combination of antidepressants by fax, without medical supervision and against the advice of my GP.
The Priory Hospital purports to operate a complaint procedure and has produced a document setting out its procedure, which is generally in accordance with the guidelines set out by the Independent Healthcare Advisory Services (IHAS). Despite the fact that The Priory Hospital’s own procedure sets out specific time-scales for dealing with complaints, it took over twelve months for The Priory to provide me with any form of response and even then it wasn’t worth the paper that it was written on. Basically, The Priory used every conceivable excuse to distance itself from the standard of care that I received from Dr David Curson at The Priory Hospital Roehampton. Despite the fact that I had seen Dr Curson at The Priory Hospital Roehampton and all the medical instructions that I had received from him had been conveyed to me on Priory Hospital Roehampton headed letter paper, according to June Fordy it had nothing to do with The Priory because Dr Curson was working as an independent consultant. Also, despite the fact that my GP had advised me to stop taking the combination of drugs altogether and Dr Curson had overruled my GP’s advice in writing, according to June Fordy my GP was to blame. Clearly neither Dave Hall nor June Fordy had any intention of properly addressing my complaint.
Also, at one point I requested a copy of my medical records held by The Priory Hospital. As appears to be the norm when dealing with The Priory, I had to ask several times before I received a response and I was then told that The Priory did not have my medical records because they had been lost. Some weeks later I discovered that The Priory did in fact have copies of the letters written to me by Dr Curson on computer disk. I therefore believe that The Priory’s claim that they did not have my records was both a complete lie and an excuse not to provide them to me.
The Priory Hospital is a member of the IHAS and as such is supposed to comply with IHAS procedures, which cover how a complaint should be dealt with and appropriate time scales. The IHAS has the ability to refer a complaint for external adjudication. However, based on my experience, the IHAS does not have the authority to ensure that The Priory Hospital complies with IHAS procedures.
If you wish to make a complaint about the standard of care received from The Priory Hospital, put your complaint in writing to the hospital in question and request a copy of the Priory Hospital complaint procedure. If you do not receive a satisfactory response, refer your complaint to the Independent Healthcare Advisory Services. If IHAS is unable to obtain a satisfactory response from The Priory Hospital, you can also refer the matter to the Care Quality Commission. The Patients Association can also provide advice.
If you have experienced problems with either the standard of care received from The Priory Hospital or consider that The Priory has not adequately addressed your complaint, please contact us. All messages recieved will be dealt with confidentially.