When you have a medical complaint, whether it is against a doctor, a practice, or an insurance company, writing a letter is often one of the most effective means to resolution. A letter creates a written record of your complaint, and memorialises the event that prompted it. It is usually a good idea to outline your letter before you begin, to be sure that it includes all of your main points. Writing an outline will help you focus on the main issue. Keep important papers at hand to refer to such as medical bills and records. Citing facts will give your letter of complaint validity and persuasive power.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Things you need
- Medical documentation
Gather necessary information such as the correct name and address of the medical facility or physician. Some practices are owned by local hospitals, so be sure you know which entity to address. Begin the outline by listing out the facts that you have about the addressee.
Draft direct statements about the complaint in the first sentence. The Consumer Action Website suggests citing the date of the incident, the name of those involved and where the incident took place. If you are writing about more than one incident, you should be sure to describe each one separately.
Think about how you want the matter resolved. This information usually goes in the third paragraph. Outline any specific remedies you want, including refunds or payment for further treatment. List documentation to be included with the complaint letter such as medical bills, records, and any correspondence you have had with the provider.
Decide on the time frame in which you would like a response. List the name of any agencies with which you plan to register your complaint, such as the Federal Citizen Information Center, Better Business Bureau or the State Board of Medical Licensure.
Make a list on the final outline of items you need to copy and forward with the letter, which will include any relevant bills or other records. If the complaint involves a product, include a precise description, including manufacturer and serial number. Take a picture of any injury or malfunctioning product. Be sure to make copies for your records and all addressees.
Print out forms supplied by your State medical board used for complaints against physicians and other medical personnel, if applicable. You can transfer your information to a form and follow instructions given by the board for submission. When you read over these forms, look for any pertinent information not already included in your outline.
Tips and warnings
- Choose the time to write the outline when you are calm and not driven by emotions, and allow plenty of time to work without interruptions.
- Think about your outline once it is finished before you turn it into a draft. The more time you have to process your ideas, the stronger your letter will be in the end.
- Avoid threatening, legalistic language in a medical complaint letter. Even if warranted, this kind of language discourages the recipient from taking your letter seriously, and may result in counter-claims against you.
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