Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS)


Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS)

We are a department that can help you with many things.

Our services are confidential and we aim to make a difference to your experience of our services.

What is PALS?

PALS is the Patient Advice and Liaison Service. PALS is a non-clinical point of contact within the hospital for patients, relatives, carers and friends requiring advice or assistance in relation to services provided by ESNEFT.

The PALS Service is independent and confidential and we will not speak to anyone about the patient unless appropriate permission has been obtained.

If you have spoken to the ward or clinical staff and still require additional support, PALS is there to help resolve queries as quickly and easily as possible. The PALS staff will coordinate your concerns to the most appropriate department, and it is the responsibility of the departmental senior management team to respond directly to you and ensure your questions or concerns are fully addressed.

What does PALS offer?

  • Advice for you and your family.
  • PALS will listen to your concerns, feedback and queries.
  • PALS can help sort out queries quickly on your behalf, by arranging for the appropriate staff to contact you.
  • Advice on how to make a formal complaint.
  • Referral to independent advocacy services who provide free and confidential advocacy when raising a formal complaint.
  • Signposting to relevant local support and / or voluntary groups that can give advice.
  • Take feedback on our services ensuring that all information received is shared with the wider Patient Experience team and used to improve patient care in the future.
  • Take details of praise and compliments you wish to pass on in relation to the care and treatment you have received.

What are PALS unable to help with?

  • PALS cannot give medical advice or information.
  • PALS are unable to discuss a medical diagnosis.
  • PALS cannot influence or bring forward treatment or appointments.
  • PALS are unable to alter decisions made regarding care, treatment or discharge plans.
  • PALS cannot offer a counselling service.
  • PALS are unable to provide copies of a patient’s medical records (but can signpost to the right department who can help with this).
  • PALS are unable to help with queries relating to primary care providers, such as your GP, pharmacist or optician, or Mental Health Services. However, they can signpost you to the right PALS team who can help.


PALS is not an emergency service.

If you have concerns regarding your medical health, please contact your GP or NHS 111. In the event of an emergency, please dial 999.

Contact PALS

The PALS offices are open Monday to Friday, 8 am – 4 pm (excluding bank holidays).

Outside these hours, please leave a voicemail message or send an email and you will be contacted as soon as possible during the next working day.

People are sometimes concerned that raising a query or concern will adversely affect the care they receive. This is not the case. By welcoming feedback, we are able to identify areas for improvement and make positive changes for patients, as well as recognising what we do well.

Telephone PALS

Contact the Colchester Hospital PALS team:

  • Call us using our Freephone number 0800 783 7328
  • Call us on 01206 742683 (extension 2683)

If your call is urgent and you require assistance outside our office hours, please dial 01206 747 474 and ask to speak to the Site Matron.

Colchester PALS Office Accessibility information from AccessAble (Opens in a new window)

Contact the Ipswich Hospital PALS team:

  • Call us using our Freephone number 0800 328 7624
  • Call us on 01473 704 781 (extension 6781)

If your call is urgent and you need assistance outside our office hours, please dial 01473 712 233 and ask to speak to the Site Matron.

Write to PALS

Patient Advice and Liaison Service
Colchester Hospital
Turner Road

Patient Advice and Liaison Service (S617)
Ipswich Hospital
Heath Road

Ipswich PALS Office Accessibility information from AccessAble (Opens in a new window)

Email PALS

Contact the PALS team via email

Please specify in the subject field of your email whether your email relates to Colchester Hospital, Ipswich Hospital or one of our Community sites. Remember to include your full name, contact telephone number and the patient’s full name and date of birth, as well as hospital number or NHS number if known.


Get involved – Make a difference!

Do you have a passion for improving healthcare? Would you like to support your local hospital as a Patient and Carer Experience Ambassador?

Support our Patient Experience Team by engaging in specific roles within the Trust such as participating in project working, engagement events and meetings, be a member of a patient and carer user group, surveys, admin support and engaging with patients to hear their experiences, to name but a few.

Find out more about opportunities to get involved (Opens in a new window)


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