End of Year Report 2012/2013

NHS Veterans Special Interest Group (SIG)

Over the past year in Lancashire, our Veteran SIG has gone from strength to strength with over 20 Veteran Champions across teams in LCFT. During the past year we have maintained our NHS Veteran ChampionsImage: External Icon in every IAPT Primary Mental Health Team across Lancashire Care NHS Foundation Trust and recruited new Champions in a range of teams across the Networks (link to LCFT Veteran Champions & Champion Role). Simon, our Veteran Service User has joined the SIG as a Trust VolunteerImage: External Icon, his passion and knowledge help drive our strategic plans forwards.

Our Veteran SIG meetings have been well attended and have enabled us to roll out a veteran awareness poster campaign Image: External Iconfor both staff, "HAS ANYONE ON YOUR CASELOAD SERVED IN THE ARMED FORCES - ASK THE QUESTION", and for patients "HAVE YOU EVER SERVED IN THE ARMED FORCES?". We have begun to share our Veteran Priority PathwayImage: External Iconand develop an Interface and Veteran PathwayImage: External Iconbetween NHS and voluntary sector organisations. All Teams with a Veteran Champion receive regular updates of Veteran Services at team meetings, as well as benefitting from a service specific Veteran Information FolderImage: External Icondeveloped by team Champions to support teams in better understanding and meeting the needs of local veterans and their families.

Regular half day Veteran Awareness Training WorkshopsImage: External Icon have continued to be well attended this year and are available to all Trust staff. A new introduction this year were 90 minute Veteran Team Updates, these are bookable via local Champions. Over 270 staff have now accessed Veteran Awareness Training so we recognise we have still a long way yet to go. This year we hope to launch an e-learning Veteran Awareness package so that all Trust staff can access on-line Veteran Awareness Training.

Over the past year, IAPT services have invested significantly in training clinicians to deliver NICE Guidance compliant interventions, relevant to the needs of local veterans, in particular Trust wide access to Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) and Clinical Updates in Trauma-Focussed interventions provided by Lancashire Traumatic Stress Service (LTSS). LTSS have also launched regular trauma case consultation sessionsImage: External Icon for LCFT clinicians.

Locally around Lancashire, Councils have signed Community Covenant PledgesImage: External Icon and our Chief Executive, Heather Tierney-Moore has represented the Trust at many of these events. Our NHS Champions have begun to link into locality covenant group meetings with local Council Champions to begin to develop local veteran strategies and projects across the county. 

The North West IAPT Military Veteran Service has secured funding from CCG's across the North West for a further year, as did the wrap-around service LIVE-AT-EASE. A website Directory for Military Veterans and their families has also been launched with LCFT listed and a Specialist Rehab and Mobility CentreImage: External Icon have been established in the North West in Preston.

Our plans for the coming year are to further raise awareness of veteran needs and rights across all Networks in the Trust and develop the Veteran Champion role across all teams in LCFT. We plan to launch a Veteran Website for Service Users and their FamiliesImage: External Icon and promote our Veteran Pathways with other veteran service providers to create a more seamless service between the Public, Private, Voluntary and Charitable sectors that all work so hard to highlight the needs and offer services and support to local veterans and their families in Lancashire.

Prepared by Lisa Graham, Senior CBT Therapist, East Lancashire Healthy Minds with support from Veteran Champions across LCFT