Managing feedback and complaints is a fundamental part of providing quality services. Managing complaints and feedback is made up of three distinct steps:
The procedure in place at Ear Science is based on the Ombudsman Western Australia Guidelines for effective handling of complaints document and NDIS Rules 2018.
Ear Science has a robust procedure to manage and resolve complaints, using the knowledge to further improve the services offered to clients.
The process for clients to provide feedback and make complaints are easy and all complaints and feedback will be dealt with promptly and fairly.
It is important that there are clear roles for receiving and addressing feedback.
All employees: should encourage feedback, support clients to provide feedback and communicate feedback to management in a timely manner.
Team leader: Team leader encouraged to deal with non complex feedback in clinic at the time of feedback.
Admin Coordinator: Support Team Leader and Clinic manager to address administration and process related feedback.
Clinical coordinator: Support Team Leader and Clinic manager to address clinical and process related feedback.
Clinic manager: Clinic manager is responsible for addressing and ensuring all feedback is addressed/resolved and the required improvements have been actioned.
COO: Support Clinic manager where required to address feedback and process improvement requirements.
Complaint and Feedback methods
Ear Science will accept feedback and complaints in a manner that suits the client. Clients may choose to provide feedback in the following ways;
- Verbally, to employees
- Online form, the link is provided to clients on all post appointment communications, at reception in all clinics.
- Paper form, Paper Feedback Form provided to clients in clinic
- Email, details provided to clients on all communications
Enable Feedback and complaints
At Ear Science we welcome Feedback and complaints, all Employees are required and encouraged to welcome any feedback. To ensure clients know that feedback is welcomed and to make sure they know how to provide feedback the following is in place;
- Sign (Client Feedback Reception sign) requesting ‘Feedback’ is displayed on reception counter of all clinic, clients can choose to provide feedback verbally or via the online or a paper form either anonymously or with their contact details.
- All clients receive an email after their appointment relevant to the appointment they attending providing relevant information and information on how to provide feedback about the services they have received
- All client handouts provides the details on how to provide feedback ie Aftercare package
Actioning feedback or a complaint
Non-complex complaints and feedback that can be dealt with in the spot, should be managed by the employee receiving the complaint or the team leader. Feedback should then be documented and set to the admin coordinator to record or action.
Verbal complaints should be documented by the employee who receives the feedback and sent to the admin coordinator. All employees that receive written feedback should forward the feedback to the admin coordinator.
Where appropriate the feedback should be recorded on the client record, feedback should not be recorded on a client’s file if received anonymously or if the feedback is confidential.
The online and paper form incorporates NPS rating, NPS is a metric of satisfaction measured monthly. This metric allows us to monitor satisfaction with our services and respond appropriately.
Responding to feedback and complaints
It is the Clinic Manager’s responsibility to review each complaint with all available information and to document the complaint on the ESIA compliments and complaints register
- For clients that have provided their contact details, the clinic manager to contact the client within 24 hours of receiving the feedback/complaint to:
- Obtain better understanding of situation
- Request their input into a suitable solution, it is important to include the client in the solution
- Provide solution at this time, where appropriate
- Confirm timeframe in which client will be contacted to continue discussion or to provide a solution
- Support the client if they want to raise the feedback with the commissioner
- Confirm with client the best way for us to communicate with them
- Document in communications on Earsuite the outcome of the call
- Review complaint:
- All feedback to be assessed and resolved in a fair and efficient manner
- With appropriate colleagues only ie. Clinic staff, Head of Clinical Services, Operations Team, Team Leaders, to ensure objectivity and fairness.
- In relation to our processes
- With relevant involved employees
- Ensure confidentiality is maintained at all times.
- It is important that clients are no adversely treated following feedback.
- Assess if a deed of settlement must be signed by client following acceptance of solution
- Provide client with a solution:
- Contact client in the way they requested
- Give client the opportunity to respond to provided solution
- Thank client for their feedback
- Document solution in communications
- Document Feedback on ESIA compliments and complaints register
- All details relating to the feedback to be documented in detail
- Indicate the category of the complaint by the drop down, from this review if there are any systemic trends in feedback and address.
- Categories have been identified to identify any trends in feedback
- All details relating to the complaint to be kept confidential and only disclosed if required by Law
- Report Feedback to commission if requested to do so
Accountability and learning
Client feedback and complaints should provide the foundation for future improvements. It forms part of our continuous quality improvement process.
- Management team to document the complaint or feedback on the ‘client feedback and complaints register’
- Identify systemic trends in feedback.
- From the complaint/feedback review current procedures and policies and the need to:
- Provide training
- Update current polices and or procedures
- Develop new polices and or procedures
- Implement the required changes to ensure that the incidence does not occur again
- Communicate decision and changes to relevant parties
- Communicate the changes to all employees
The right to seek further support from an advocate or external provider
If a client with a disability does not believe ESIA has resolved their complaint or concern, they must be advised that they can seek further support from family, a friend or an independent advocate in making a complaint, or an external agency. For further information see: Disability Advocacy
People with disability living in Western Australia, can make a complaint to the NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission by:
- Phoning: 1800 035 544 (free call from landlines) or TTY 133 677. Interpreters can be arranged.
- National Relay Service and ask for 1800 035 544.
- Completing a complaint contact form.
This information is provided to them on the NDIS service agreement form.
The NDIS Commission can take complaints from anyone about:
- NDIS services or supports that were not provided in a safe and respectful way
- NDIS services and supports that were not delivered to an appropriate standard
- how an NDIS provider has managed a complaint about services or supports provided to an NDIS participant