A veteran is someone who has served in the armed forces for at least 1 day. There are around 2.6 million veterans in the UK.
The health needs of military veterans can differ significantly to those of other patients, it's highly important for continuing healthcare to tell your GP that you have served.
The NHS has a duty to deliver on a number of health commitments in relation to the Armed Forces community which are set out in the Armed Forces Covenant and the NHS Constitution.
The Armed Forces Covenant
- The Armed Forces community should enjoy the same standard of, and access to healthcare as that received by any other UK citizen in the area they live.
- Family members should retain their place on any NHS waiting list, if moved around the UK due to the service person being posted.
- Veterans should receive priority treatment for a condition which relates to their service, subject to clinical need.
- Those injured in service should be cared for in a way that reflects the nation's moral obligation to them, by healthcare professionals who understand the Armed Forces culture.
The NHS Constitution states 'the NHS will ensure that in line with the Armed Forces Covenant, those in the Armed Forces, reservists, their families and veterans are not disadvantaged in accessing health services in the area they reside'.
Veterans’ Mental Health Transition, Intervention and Liaison Service (TILS)
The TILS is for both serving personnel approaching discharge from the military and ex-forces with mental health difficulties. The service provides a range of treatment, from recognising the early signs of mental health problems and providing access to early support, to therapeutic treatment for complex mental health difficulties and psychological trauma. Help may also be provided with housing, employment, alcohol misuse and social support.
Veterans’ Mental Health Complex Treatment Service (CTS)
The CTS is for ex-forces who have military related complex mental health difficulties that have not improved with previous treatment. The service provides intensive care and treatment that may include (but is not limited to) support for drug and alcohol misuse, physical health, employment, housing, relationships and finances, as well as occupational and trauma focused therapies.
To access these services, you need to contact the TILS. You can do this yourself, or ask your GP or a military charity to refer you:
Veterans Trauma Network
The Veterans Trauma Network (VTN) provides care and treatment to those with a service related physical health condition. Available in specialist health centres across England, the VTN works closely with Defence Medical Services, the TILS and CTS, as well as military charities to provide a complete package of care. Your GP can refer you by emailing email@example.com
We are consious that some patients registered at Broom Leys Surgery may be affected by currevt events in afghaniistan. Broom Leys Surgery is accredited by the Royal College of General Practitioners as one which specialises in the care of military veterans and their families. All the team have been trained in the care of military veterans and their families. If recent events have affected you and you wish to seek help, please come forward.
Urgent and emergency support from other NHS services
If you experience a mental health crisis you can also get help by dialling 111, booking an emergency GP appointment, visiting A&E or calling 999. If you are still serving, you can also call the Military Mental Health Helpline on 0800 323 4444
Op COURAGE: The Veterans Mental Health and Wellbeing Service
Call 0300 323 0137 or email
firstname.lastname@example.org (includes the Op COURAGE urgent care and support service)
Please Click here for more information
For further information click on the links below:
NHS Armed Forces and Veterans Healthcare
Armed Forces Covenant Veterans leaflet
Top tips for the military Veteran – how to get the most from your GP
NHS Mental Health Care for Veterans
NHS Mental Health Care for Veterans