Our support services

Watch this video to find out more information about the many support services available to patients and parents at Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH), including the Pals service and the chaplaincy.

Luke: "Pals stands for the Patient Advice and Liaison Service and people usually come to us in the first instance with just some very open questions. They want to know how to get referred to Great Ormond Street, they'd like to know physically how to get here or what to bring with them when they come.

"But they could also sometimes have negative experiences and want to know sometimes how to communicate better with staff when they're feeling quite anxious, upset or sometimes angry. By doing that, by listening to people and talking with people, we hope that we can get much better outcomes for them.

"There's lots of ways you can get in touch with the Patient Advice Liaison Service. You can email us, you can phone us, you can just walk past our office and pop in. We are here during normal working hours.

"Depending on the kind of concerns you have, we in Pals might refer you on to other services. There are some counselling services available, we do also have the Child Death Helpline [0800 282 986]. Their contact number is available on the website and staffed by volunteers who have been trained to help support you through that process.

"We can also refer you on to our chaplaincy who can speak to you about whatever faith concerns you might have and how that is impacting your child's care."

Jim: "The chapel is a place which is built totally for children; even the pews are child-sized. There is an intercession book that anybody who wants to write a prayer in can do so, and then every morning at 10.30am we read those prayers at a little prayer time we have here.

"And we don't believe everybody's religious, but we believe everybody's spiritual, meaning we are concerned with hope, finding meaning, transcendence of the bigger picture in relationships, and we try to simply be there for them and accompany them on their journey."

Luke: "If you've got concerns, if you've got questions, the first people you would be speaking to is the people on the ward; your named nurse or the nurse in charge and you'll be meeting regularly with the consultants responsible for your child.

"It's only if you don't feel as though you've got the answers you need or you would like to have some reassurance about the information you've been given, that you could come to the Pals team. There are some times and occasions where you might feel reticent or you might feel nervous about talking about a nurse you're not happy with or a doctor you're not happy with. We want to make quite clear that it won't affect your child's care.

"It's our opportunity to put your concerns right."