Armed Forces Veteran

Certificate of Accreditation

Certificate of Accreditation awarded to West Street Surgery for meeting the standards required to become an Armed Forces veteran friendly accredited GP practice and supporting the health commitments of the Armed Forces Covenant.

Healthcare for the armed forces community

How the NHS can help if you’re in the British armed forces or are a veteran, a reservist or a family member of someone who is serving or who has served.

Website: NHS: Armed Forces Community

The Royal British Legion

The Royal British Legion is here to help members of the Royal Navy, British Army, Royal Air Force, veterans and their families. The RBL veterans medial funds programme provides support for veterans with hearing loss and physical injuries, providing grants towards specialist equipment and therapies.

Telephone: 0808 802 8080



Contact - Collaborating for Military Mental Health

Contact is a group of charitable, support and state organisations that have joined forces to enhance mental health support available to the Armed Forces community. Contact aims to improve collaborative care management, increase instances of help-seeking behaviour, improve service provision, encourage best practice across the sector and improve public knowledge of what support is available and how best to access it.



We are very proud to support our veterans as part of the Armed Forces veteran friendly accredited GP practice programme.

Whilst many aspects of the health needs of veterans are the same as for the general public, there are sometimes differences, particularly in relation to conditions linked to service life and the impact upon families. These differences can be reflected in the way in which healthcare is delivered, the range and types of some specific services provided and the long-term impact upon patients and families.

As part of the health commitments of the Armed Forces Covenant, we have a dedicated clinician who has a specialist knowledge of military related health conditions and veteran specific health services. This is important in helping ex-forces to get the best care and treatment.

What is a Veteran?

A veteran is anyone who has served for at least one day in the Armed Forces, whether regular or reserve. Veterans also include any member of the Merchant Marine who has served in a war zone. This includes crew from convoys in World War 2 and more recently in the Falklands conflict and Gulf Wars. It means the same as ‘ex service personnel’ or ‘ex-forces’, although not all veterans know, choose or want to associate with the term ‘veteran’. This is particularly the case amongst younger veterans who often refer to themselves as ‘ex-forces’, due to the common belief that a veteran is someone who fought in the First / Second World War.

About 18,000 service people move back into civilian life every year and whilst most of these individuals have similar levels of health to the general population, around 2,000 leave on medical grounds. The top reasons for medical discharge are for issues relating to back, knees, mental health and hearing.

If you are a veteran, ex service personnel or ex-forces, please let any member of the West Street Surgery Team know to help ensure you are getting the best possible care.

How to get the most from your GP – Top Tips for veterans.

The Veterans Covenant Health Alliance (VCHA)

The Veterans Covenant Healthcare Alliance (VCHA) is a group of NHS providers – including acute, mental health, community, and ambulance Trusts – who have agreed to be exemplars of the best care for, and support to, the armed forces community (be they Regular, Reserves, Veterans, spouses or dependants).


Help for Heroes

Help for Heroes provides direct, practical support for wounded, injured and sick service personnel, veterans and their loved ones from any conflict. They have four recovery centres in the UK offering medical care, guidance, support and advice. Patients can self-refer or be referred by a professional. Once referred, an initial assessment will take place within one to two weeks and there is no waiting list for treatment.