This website uses cookies to function correctly.
You may delete cookies at any time but doing so may result in some parts of the site not working correctly.

Veterans

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 england.veteranstraumanetwork@nhs.net

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



Call 111 when you need medical help fast but it’s not a 999 emergencyNHS ChoicesThis site is brought to you by My Surgery Website