Pain is reported to occur in the majority of patients with advanced cancer and is one of the main reasons for referral to a hospital specialist palliative care team. Yet despite this, there is a paucity of research into the impact the hospital specialist palliative care team has on pain control in patients. A non-equivalent control group design using a quota sample investigated 100 cancer patients who had been admitted to hospital for symptom control. Fifty patients received specialist hospital palliative care team intervention compared with 50 patients receiving traditional care. Outcome was assessed using the Palliative Care Assessment (PACA) tool on three occasions. There was no difference between the groups on the initial assessment and the results indicated that all cancer patients admitted to hospital had a significant improvement in their pain control. However, the patients who had the additional input of the palliative care team demonstrated a statistically significant greater improvement than the control group (P < 0.001). Potential explanations are made for the results including the enhanced knowledge and skills of the hospital specialist palliative care team.