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Better mental health care support for veterans is launched
5:56pm Sunday 10th March 2013 in News
A MENTAL health service for Armed Forces veterans has been launched in York.
The service provides outreach workers who will assess the mental health needs of former servicemen and women, and liaise with local health services and charities to make sure they meet veterans’ needs.
Funding for the service, which launched on Thursday, March 7, is provided by the Government as part of a promise to provide more support for veterans’ mental health needs, and will be available until March 2015.
Dr Jennie Ormerod, consultant clinical psychologist, said: “We were finding military veterans didn’t feel comfortable accessing mainstream NHS services because of the time they have spent in a military environment.
“We realised we needed to make it as easy as possible for these people to access our services as there is still a stigma surrounding mental health issues in the military.
“The Veterans Outreach Service employs specialist veterans’ mental health outreach therapists covering Yorkshire and the Humber.
“The therapists are unique in that they are sensitive to military culture. We aim to provide triage and thorough assessment to refer veterans on to the most appropriate service to meet their needs.”
Around 200 people attended the launch event at the Royal York Hotel, including representatives from the NHS, the Armed Forces, Department of Health as well as veterans and their families.
The service will be hosted by Humber NHS Foundation Trust and run in partnership with Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust and Sheffield Health and Social Care NHS Foundation Trust.