Support and information for parent and carers

We know that life can be stressful when your child isn’t well or is in hospital. Below are some ideas of people you can talk to when you’re feeling low.

Psychosocial service

Our psychosocial teams are groups of highly trained professionals, including social workers, family support workers, family therapy and clinical psychologists, with expertise in caring for children and families in a hospital setting.

All wards and departments can get in touch with the psychosocial team. Some of the ways that they can help include:

  • providing support and advice about the practical and financial challenges of being in hospital
  • encouraging a child to express feelings, either through talking or play
  • working with families to minimise the distress caused by illness and medical treatments
  • identifying what local support may be needed during and after discharge and liaising with local services to plan this
  • consultation to help staff on the wards with the emotional care of the child and family
  • assessment of behaviour, emotions and family functioning
  • psychological interventions with individual children, parents and families
  • psychological therapies including cognitive, behavioural, narrative and family therapies

Contact the psychosocial team via your doctor or nurse, or to see a Social Worker or Family Support Worker, visit the Social work department on Level 1 of the Frontage Building, below Outpatients.

Patient Advice and Liaison Service (Pals)

Our Pals team can give you confidential advice and support about any issues that crop up while you are visiting or staying at GOSH. You can:

  • visit us at the Pals office (opposite the hospital shop)
  • telephone 020 7829 7862
  • email
  • write to Pals office, Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital, London, WC1N 3JH

Chaplaincy and spiritual care

The Chaplaincy and spiritual care service offers spiritual, religious and pastoral care to staff, families, and children of all faiths or none. They provide a 24-hour on-call service every day of the year.

Bereavement services

Staff in our Bereavement services are available to offer experienced and skilled support to families having to cope with end of life issues and decisions.

Other sources of help and support

Family Lives

A registered charity that offers support to anyone parenting a child.

Telephone: 0808 800 2222 (free)


Emotional support to anyone in distress.

Telephone: 0845 790 9090

Contact a Family

Charity providing support and advice to parents of children with any kind of disability.

Telephone: 0808 808 3555

Child Death Helpline

Freephone service for anyone affected by the death of a child.

Telephone: 0800 282 986


Mental health helpline.

Telephone: 0845 767 8000


The online Citizen’s Advice Bureau service that gives you information on a wide range of topics, including benefits and employment, and debt and legal issues.