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Over a hundred complaints about missing patient records escalated to NHS England

NHS England has received more than 100 complaints about Primary Care Support England's (PCSE) handling of patient records since Capita took on the contract in September 2015.

The highest number of complaints - which come as Pulse reported that GP practices were forced to stockpile paper records as collections were paused - were made in the London region (33), followed by the South East (13) and Birmingham (10).

The first complaints occurred in February 2016, coinciding with Capita's overhaul of practice-to-practice patient record transfers, while complaint numbers peaked in the last months of 2016, with 19 complaints made in November alone.

To date in January, 11 complaints have been made, despite recent claims by health ministers that the problems were easing.

The figures, which don't include instances of complaints made directly to PCSE, were revealed in repsonse to a parliamentary question from Wakefield MP Mary Creagh.

Responding to the MP's question, health minister David Mowat said: ‘NHS England has received 103 complaints concerning Primary Care Services England, which make reference to the transfer of patient records, since 1 September 2015.'

The revelation comes as NHS England has declined to provide Pulse with the full number of complaints and serious incidents relating to the PCSE contract, which has slashed its £100m-per-year support service budget by 40%.

NHS England has said it will produce an annual report on issues, but the report covering the first year since Capita began overhauling services will not be released until July.

It comes as Pulse has revealed a host of issues suffered by GPs in the past year, including delayed and missing patient records, problems with getting on the national performers list and a range of missing payments for services performed.

An NHS England spokesperson told Pulse: 'It’s no secret that there have been problems relating to the Capita contract so we are continuing to monitor, review progress and investigate issues raised by users.

'We are now working more closely with Capita to ensure that urgent and immediate improvements are made and this has included embedding a team of NHS England experts alongside Capita to more quickly identify and rapidly resolve issues. Capita has assured us they recognise the scale of the shortfalls, and are committed to resolving them as quickly as possible.'

A Capita spokesperson told Pulse: 'Every week we securely deliver an average of average 100,000 medical records in a timely manner and for the first time ever we expect every record in every local area to be delivered in a sealed bag. We continuously review and monitor feedback from users so we and NHS England can be confident that our processes are working effectively for GP practices.'

Where and when were complaints made?

 RegionNumberFebruary-2016March-2016April-2016May-2016June-2016July-2016August-2016September-2016October-2016November-2016December-2016January-2017

London

London

33

1

2

   

2

2

1

7

7

5

4

2

Total

 

33

1

2

0

0

2

2

1

7

7

5

4

2

Birmingham

Midlands and East

10

         

3

 

1

1

2

3

 

Derbyshire

Midlands and East

6

         

1

   

1

3

1

 

Arden

Midlands and East

2

                     

2

Herts

Midlands and East

1

       

1

             

Leics

Midlands and East

4

       

1

1

1

       

1

Shropshire

Midlands and East

2

           

1

   

1

   

East Anglia and Essex

Midlands and East

4

               

1

 

3

 

Total

 

29

0

0

0

0

2

5

2

1

3

6

7

3

Lancashire

North

5

       

1

     

1

2

1

 

Cumbria

North

4

           

1

1

1

1

   

Greater Manchester

North

2

           

1

1

       

Cheshire and Merseyside

North

1

           

1

         

Durham

North

2

                   

1

1

Total

 

14

0

0

0

0

1

0

3

2

2

3

2

1

Wessex

South

7

       

1

 

1

1

1

 

3

 

South Central

South

5

         

1

1

1

1

1

   

South West

South

2

         

1

   

1

     

South East

South

13

   

1

   

1

   

1

4

1

5

Total

 

27

0

0

1

0

1

3

2

2

4

5

4

5

Grand Total

 

103

1

2

1

0

6

10

8

12

16

19

17

11

 Source: House of Commons

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