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University Hospitals Dorset NHS Foundation Trust

Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS)

When things don't go to plan

The Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) offer confidential advice, support and information on matters relating to your care and treatment at any of the trust's hospitals. We will listen to your comments and feedback and if something hasn’t gone so well, where we can, we will put things right as quickly as possible. We are a patient friendly, easy-to-access service designed to provide a personal contact to assist patients, relatives and carers.

If you are contacting us regarding non-elective operations and procedures that you are waiting for please follow this link to our Coronavirus guidance page where the most up to date information is available.

We know that we don't get it right for our patients 100% of the time. If you are not happy with the care you receive while in hospital it is much better to tell someone while you are still here, so that we can do something about it. You can:

  • Ask to speak to the Ward Sister/Charge Nurse (or their deputy) on your ward.
  • Ask to speak to a member of the directorate management team in charge of the ward you are staying in.

If you have concerns and would prefer to speak to someone who has not been involved in your care please contact the Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS).

If you are wishing to raise concerns or complaints on behalf of a patient, we will need written consent from the patient or a full copy (15 pages) of Health and Welfare Power of Attorney to enable a reply to be provided to you. This is simply because we have a duty to protect every patient's right to confidentiality concerning their clinical treatment.

What is PALS?

The PALS and Complaints team at University Hospitals Dorset NHS Foundation Trust is a patient friendly, easy-to-access service designed to provide a personal contact to assist patients, relatives and carers.

PALS and Complaints team can offer you on-the-spot advice and information when you have queries or difficulties regarding the hospital services or the care you have received.

They will listen to your concerns and help you find ways of resolving them.

They will also take note of what you tell them to help us improve our services for patients.

The PALS and Complaints department provides confidential, free advice and support and is independent to wards and departments in the Trust.

Patient Advice & Liaison Service (PALS) at UHD

Although the staff who look after you do all they can to make sure you are treated properly and promptly, we recognise that occasionally, things can go wrong. If you, your family or visitor have a concern about your care or treatment, where possible you should talk to someone who is close to the cause of your concern, such as the doctor, nurse or receptionist. We always like to try to resolve concerns at the time they happen and often, the matter can be resolved straight away. Likewise, we want the opportunity to try to stop it from happening again.

If you don’t want to raise your concern with the staff involved, you can ask to speak to the Matron or contact them via the main hospital switchboard.

If you feel that the member of staff has not adequately resolved your concern, or if you would rather raise your concern with someone else, you can contact the PALS service, which is based away from the wards, in the Patient Experience Centre. We will work with you to achieve a satisfactory resolution, whether you are requesting information, providing feedback, raising a concern or making a complaint.

PALS are here to:

  • Provide information and help answer questions about hospital care
  • Advise and support patients their families and carers. We understand that being in hospital can be an anxious time and you might need someone else to act on your behalf
  • Listen to your concerns if you are unhappy with an aspect of your care and help to resolve problems or concerns quickly, before they become more serious. We are also the gateway to the complaints procedure and can give you information about making a complaint and how to contact independent help
  • Organise interpreters for deaf people and non-English speakers
  • Listen to your views about our services and your ideas about how we could improve. We are a contact point for your feedback and suggestions about how services can be improved.

We are available Monday to Friday from 09.00 to 15.00. You can telephone us: 0300 019 8499, if no one is available to take your call please email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., and we will contact you as soon as we are able to. We are usually able to return your call on the next working day, but if that is not possible, we aim to return all calls within 2 working days.

PALS contact number

UHD PALS: 0300 019 8499

If you call out-of-hours, please leave a message and a member of the PALS team will return your call as soon as possible.

PALS contact email address

UHD: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


If you need any help or advice to make your complaint you can contact The Advocacy People. Their telephone information service is available on 0330 440 9000 from 10:00 - 17:00 Monday and 09:00 - 17:00 Tuesday to Friday and outside of these times a message can be left, alternatively you can e-mail them via: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or text 80800 using keyword PEOPLE followed by your message. The service is also available via www.theadvocacypeople.org.uk/ or you can write to them at:
The Advocacy People
PO Box 375
East Sussex
TN34 9HU


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