Faster NHS support for veterans thanks to Help for Heroes

Date published: 18 May 2018

Veterans across Greater Manchester and Lancashire suffering from severe mental health problems will get quicker access to support thanks to £431,109 of funding from military charity Help for Heroes.

Help for Heroes, which offers support to veterans who have suffered life changing injuries or illnesses, is grant funding nearly half a million pounds to Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust to improve mental health support to military veterans.

The funding means veterans with service related mental health problems in Greater Manchester and Lancashire will have improved access to effective treatment and benefit from reduced waiting times, through the employment of two new therapists within the Pennine Care Military Veterans’ Service.

Sharon Morris, one of those newly recruited, said she would be going the extra mile to ensure a shift from “surviving to thriving” within the military community.

“The funding helps to not only provide a therapeutic service, but a compassionate response to people that deserve it, and the more veterans that can be given this invaluable service the better.

“I personally cannot thank Help for Heroes enough.”

Karen Mead, Head of Psychological Wellbeing at Help for Heroes, said: “Help for Heroes is a charity leading the way in mental health support to members of the Armed Forces community. Many of our veterans need support with mental health problems and it is vitally important they get a fair deal and are offered support in a timely and effective manner.

“Help for Heroes believes that those who put their lives on the line for us deserve a second chance at life. This grant funding will enable us to empower our veterans in Greater Manchester and Lancashire to regain their purpose and will ensure we can better meet the needs of veterans in those areas suffering with their mental health.”

Dr Alan Barrett, Consultant Clinical Lead at Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust said: “Funding additional clinical posts will boost our services ability to deliver evidenced psychological therapies in a timely manner, to military veterans, who need it most, across greater Manchester and Lancashire.

“We would like to thank the generous donors that have raised funds for Help for Heroes, who we are sure will be pleased to see some funding going to support the mental health needs of those who have served. This partnership ensures joined up working, in particular between the NHS and the charitable sector, to maximize ‘whole person’ care delivery for ex-British armed forces personnel.

"We hope that this Help for Heroes funding approach stimulates the sector to further consider the sustainability of collaborative funding and working going forwards, to ensure that military veterans receive the best available care.”

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