GP practice complaints in decline
The number of written complaints against practices is falling, according to Department of Health figures. A total of 33,903 complaints were registered in the past year, down from 35,383 in 2000/1 the last recorded data.
The drop in the number of complaints against family health services is the first since the mid-90s.
The number of medical complaints reaching the independent review panel stage has also fallen.
In 2002/3, 935 complainants wanted a panel hearing compared with 1,027 two years ago. Only 160 cases were referred to a panel, compared with 245 two years ago.