A Good Health investigation has found that over 40 hospitals in the UK received more than 100 patient complaints last year which revealed a significant issue in terms of basic care provision.

The problem centres mainly on doctors' patient skills, with 49 per cent of complaints about "white coats" while midwives seem to be the best at dealing with hospital visitors, attracting only two per cent of the complaints.

The highest number of complaints was registered at Leicester Royal Infirmary with 275 people taking issue with staff attitude and behaviour.

While Leicester is a large hospital with 884 beds and Joyce Robins from campaign group Patient Concern admitted: "There are many wonderful staff but, the problem is, they get overshadowed by the bad."

A report published earlier year by the NHS Confederation suggested that "good bedside manner can improve patient health", yet in that same report one NHS manager was quoted as saying, "A focus on patient experience is a luxury we can't afford in these hard times."

Katerine Murray, chief executive of the Patients Association believes that better bedside manner can yield both financial and quality benefits for hospitals.

"There's a lot of evidence that suggest involving patients in discussions about their care makes it more likely that will stick to their recommended treatment, and less likely they will come back to their GP or hospital unnecessarily," she said.

"When the NHS is facing such a great financial strain, by improving patient experience, we can save the NHS money."

The chairman of the British Medical Association's Consultants' Committee said he hoped the complaints would act "as a powerful motivator for change".



For full results of the survey and to see where your local hospital click here.
Posted on November 8 2011 at 1040 by richard.hook@pavpub.com