Armed forces

We are proud to say that we are becoming a Veteran Aware trust, and that we have signed the Armed Forces Covenant.

We support the health commitments of the Armed Forces Covenant.

We are committed to ensuring no disadvantage and giving special consideration where appropriate. We educate and train our staff to help identify and respond to veterans’ needs.

We also support the UK armed forces community as an employer.

If you, your spouse or partner have ever served in the UK armed forces, let us know.
Being identified as a veteran in your NHS medical notes will ensure you are able to access specific veterans’ health services, such as those for mental health, hearing loss, limb amputation and wheelchairs.

All veterans are entitled to priority access to NHS care for service-related conditions. However, this is always subject to clinical need and does not mean that you will automatically be treated ahead of others who have a more urgent clinical.


The Veterans’ Gateway
Is a first point of contact for veterans and their families and can put them in touch with the organisations best placed to help with the information, advice and support they need. The Veterans’ Gateway can be contacted by: Phone (0808 802 1212), text (81212) or online

Defence Medical Welfare Service
Is a charitable organisation that specialises in emotional and practical support when someone is in hospital, and when they are discharged but still receiving treatment. They will arrange to speak to the patient to help identify services and support, and enable referrals to a range of military and non-military organisations. Contact the Defence Medical Welfare Service: Tel: 01264 774000 – Email:

Combat Stress
Is a charity which supports veterans’ mental health, helping former servicemen and women deal with trauma-related mental health problems such as anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).  Treatment can be provided to veterans from every service and every conflict, in a range of settings, including phone, online and in the community or a specialist centre. Tel: 0800 1381619 – Text: 07537 173683 – Email:

East Sussex Veteran’s Hub
ESVH is a charitable organisation offering support encompassing those experiencing homelessness, rough sleepers, former offenders, and individuals grappling with symptoms related to combat-induced PTSD, co-morbidity, or mental ill-health.

Our dedicated team of volunteers brings a wealth of experience, having served in the Armed Forces, worked extensively with military charities, and demonstrated proficiency as experienced caseworkers with a background in mental health management.

The Royal British Legion
Provides lifelong support for members of the Royal Navy, British Army, Royal Air Force and their families. Key services include household repairs, home adaptations, financial advice, care homes, dementia care, Admiral Nurses (dementia care) and a care phone service.

Hearing Loss and Tinnitus Services
If a former service member has acquired hearing loss and/or tinnitus relating to their time in service, additional support can be funded through the Royal British Legion Veterans’ Hearing Fund. The audiology department at the Trust can make a referral or an application form can be downloaded via the Veterans’ Medical Funds webpage at:

Mobility Equipment Support
The Royal British Legion has a Veterans’ Mobility Fund, which provides specialist wheelchairs, orthotic equipment and other mobility-related items for veterans who have a service-related serious physical injury and whose needs cannot be met through statutory services. Eligibility for the fund requires the condition to be attributable to service and typically applicants will be in receipt of a War Pension or relevant award under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme. To find out more, visit:

Providing free mental health and wellbeing services to ex-serving members of the UK Armed Forces and service personnel, including those who are making the transition to civilian life and reservists.

You can self-refer, or you can contact them to discuss your referral. They accept referrals from any professional or agency working with a veteran. They also offer support to family, friends and carers: Tel: 0300 365 2000 (option 4) – Email:

Veterans’ Trauma Network
Provides specialist care to veterans with service-specific injuries. Veterans benefit from a personalised care plan implemented by top military and civilian trauma experts in health centres across England. Referrals can be made at:

For more information: Email BLESMA at – Tel: 0208 548 7080.

Help for Heroes
Provides recovery and support for members of the Armed Forces community whose lives are affected by their service, no matter when they served.  The charity’s aim is to empower veterans and service personnel to look beyond illness and injury. A wide range of services is offered, including emotional support, mental health and wellbeing, career recovery, welfare and financial advice.

Provides lifelong support for veterans and their families. Trained SSAFA volunteers can provide practical, emotional and financial support if and when veterans need it, via a network of local branches means that help and advice is always close at hand.

Forces Employment Charity – provides support for veterans who are in contact with the justice system, enabling them to access the services they need.

Armed Forces Network – an easily accessible point of contact with a dedicated email and phone number to support the Armed Forces community as a whole can provide advice, guidance and support on a range of issues. Tel: 01273 403693.

Riverside Care and Support creating a pathway from the veteran at risk or experiencing homelessness to veteran supported housing or organisation that can support them to keep their current home and avoid becoming homeless in the first place, as well as other unsupported veteran housing. Tel: 0800 9520774

The-Veterans-Physical-Health-and-Wellbeing-Service Veterans physical health and wellbeing services.

Age UK-Veteran Support ( helping older LGBT+ veterans access financial support.

Forces Connect App
An app which can signpost you to help and support on a range of issues that might impact the Armed Forces community. For example, housing, substance misuse and physical health.

Armed Forces Network
The Armed Forces Network (AFN) started in Sussex in 2011 and is a multi-organisational group which includes members from the NHS, MoD, Armed Forces Reservists, Mental and Physical Health Clinicians, the Royal British Legion, SSAFA and other interested charities and organisations from across Sussex (i.e. police and local authorities).