What is PALS (Patient Advice and Liaison Service)?

The Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) offers confidential advice, support and information on health-related matters. They provide a point of contact for patients, their families and their carers.

You can find officers from PALS in your local hospital.

How can PALS help?

PALS provides help in many ways. For example, it can:

  • help you with health-related questions
  • help resolve concerns or problems when you're using the NHS
  • tell you how to get more involved in your own healthcare

PALS can give you information about:

  • the NHS
  • the NHS complaints procedure, including how to get independent help if you want to make a complaint
  • support groups outside the NHS

PALS also helps to improve the NHS by listening to your concerns and suggestions.

How do I contact my nearest PALS?

You can find your nearest PALS office on the NHS Choices website.  

You can also ask your GP surgery, hospital or phone NHS 111 for details of your nearest PALS.

Making a complaint

If you're not happy with an NHS service, you can make a complaint. You should complain to the person or organisation providing the service first, such as the GP, dentist, hospital or pharmacist. Alternatively, you can complain to the commissioner of that service  either NHS England or the area clinical commissioning group (CCG).

In general, NHS England commissions most primary care services, such as GP and dental services. CCGs oversee the commissioning of secondary care, such as hospital care and some community services.

Read the answers to more questions about NHS services and treatments.

Further information:

How to complain

If you're not happy with the care you've received in the NHS, you have the right to complain. Find out how to go about it.

Media last reviewed: 25/05/2012

Next review due: 25/05/2014

Page last reviewed: 10/06/2013

Next review due: 09/06/2015