Publish date: 7 May 2021

Tameside and Glossop Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust has been accredited as a Veteran Aware Trust in recognition of its commitment to improving NHS care for Veterans Reservists, members of the Armed Force and their families, and becomes one of 71 national NHS Trust to receive this accolade.

Awarded by the Veterans Covenant Healthcare Alliance (VCHA), the Veteran Aware Status acknowledges the Trust’s commitment to a number of key pledges, including:

Ensuring that the Armed Forces Community is never disadvantaged, in line with the NHS’s commitment to the Armed Forces Covenant.
Training their staff on veteran specific culture or needs
Making veterans, reservist and service families aware of appropriate charities and/or NHS services, such as mental health, or other support services
Supporting the Armed Forces as an employer
Tameside and Glossop NHS ICFT cares deeply about the Armed Forces community and have previously achieved Bronze and Silver awards for its commitment to the MOD Employer Recognition Scheme to recognise, recruit and offer positions within the Trust members of the ex-Armed Forces community. The Trust now plans to begin working towards the Gold exemplar recognition award offering further opportunities to veterans and continually supporting their reservist workforce to commit to their obligations to the Forces.

Karen James OBE, Chief Executive for Tameside and Glossop Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust said: “Achieving Veteran Aware status for our Trust is so rewarding. It demonstrates the passion of our staff across all of our services for recognising the human cost of military service. It also shows our armed forces personnel and veterans that our Trust is there when they need us and that they will be treated with the dignity and respect they deserve.”

The VCHA was inspired by the heroism of Captain Noel Godfrey Chavasse VC and Bar, a doctor who gave his life rescuing men on the battlefields of the First World War.

In 2014, leading orthopaedic surgeon Professor Tim Briggs CBE wrote The Chavasse Report on improving armed forces and veteran care while raising NHS standards, which recommended establishing a support network of hospitals. The resulting VCHA works closely with NHS England and NHS Improvement, service charities and the Ministry of Defence, and is managed by the Getting It Right First Time (GIRFT) programme.

The VCHA is working with NHS Trusts across the country to improve standards of care for the armed forces community. In time, the alliance hopes to see every NHS provider meeting the Veteran Aware standards. Veteran Aware Trusts are leading the way in improving veterans’ care within the NHS.