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If you have concerns about an NHS service, one option is to try to resolve things informally. 

You can do this by speaking to the person involved, or asking to see the person in charge. For example, if you have concerns about hospital treatment, try and talk to the person in charge of the ward. If your concern is about a GP surgery, ask to speak to the practice manager.

Any member of staff should be able to tell you how to contact the right person to talk to, or in the case of a hospital, you can find out from the Patient Advice and Liaison Service, often known as PALS (see How to complain about NHS care’ for more information on PALS). The switchboard or the website of the organisation could also tell you the right person to contact.

Keep a note of:

  • the dates and times when you speak to someone about your concern
  • the names of the people you speak to
  • what was discussed
  • the response you were given to your concern
  • what you have been told will happen next

If you are still not happy after trying informal resolution, make a complaint. If you’re not comfortable talking directly with the service provider, you can complain to whoever commissions the service (see Who do I contact to make an NHS complaint?’).

You can use our log sheet to record a timeline of:

  • any meetings you attend
  • any phone calls you make
  • any letters/​emails you send or receive about your complaint

To get a copy of our log sheet template, please make a referral.