Over the last year, Healthwatch Bucks has been working closely with ex-servicemen and women across Buckinghamshire. We have worked with them about accessing support for their health and social care needs.
We wanted to find out if they were aware of their rights. Also, whether health and social care organisations were supporting veterans effectively.
We spoke to over 150 veterans and their family members. We found that most veterans were not aware of the schemes and organisations that could help them with their needs. For example, most did not know about the enhanced rights granted to them under the Armed Forces Covenant, or that flagging themselves as a veteran with their GP would provide them with access to a range of additional, specialist services. By reaching out to veterans, we helped raise awareness of what was available to them.
We also encouraged GP practices across Buckinghamshire to achieve their Veteran Friendly Accreditation from the Royal College of GPs.
Our two reports below, provide a summary of our work with ex-servicemen and women and with GP practices across the county.