PALS (Patient Advice and Liaison Service)
The National Health Service (NHS) is huge, and made up of many parts. It can often be difficult to find your way around, and understand what is happening. Your GP may refer you to a clinic at the hospital, which sends you to another department, which then refers you to a different hospital.
Fortunately, there is help available. All health services must have a Patient Advice & Liaison Service (PALS). This is normally a team of people whose job is to help you get the best from the NHS. So, if you don’t understand something, or need to check something, then the PALS is a good place to contact. They should, also, be more Deaf aware than a lot of other people in the NHS.
If you are unsure about whether an interpreter is available, or whether a doctor has access to a minicom, then the PALS can probably help. If they can’t help, then they should be able to put you in touch with the right person.
Even your local GP practice is covered by a PALS. And, if you’re unhappy about the way you have been treated, then it’s worth getting in touch with the PALS. They can either try to sort out your complaint, or support you with the complaints procedure.
Anyone who works in the health service (e.g. receptionist, nurse, doctor) will know how you can contact the PALS.