It has signed both the Armed Forces Covenant and gained an Employer Recognition Scheme bronze award.
This means that the region has become one of only three in which all NHS Trusts in the area have signed up to both, sharing this distinction with the South West and North West.
Both are significant milestones towards gaining Veteran Aware accreditation.
The Veterans Covenant Healthcare Alliance thanks all trusts for their efforts in working towards greater support for our Armed Forces communities.
Currently VCHA accreditations currently stand at 173 NHS trusts, which means that 83% of NHS trusts in England are now accredited – this is an incredible achievement. In addition, and as directed by the Government, the VCHA has widened scope to include the independent health sector and hospices. There are now 20 organisations currently accredited, with a number in the VCHA pipeline for 2024.
VCHA chairman Prof Tim Briggs CBE said: “Well done to East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust and to all NHS Trusts that have signed up to both the Armed Forces Covenant and Employer recognition scheme , which demonstrates your strong desire to improve the health of our Armed Forces Community and to drive down disadvantage, in the face of the ongoing pressures we know all healthcare trusts continue to face. We most strongly acknowledge your outstanding efforts and pay tribute to all healthcare professionals; thank you.”
Steve Aumayer, Deputy Chief Executive and Chief People Officer at East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust and a former Royal Navy officer, said: “We have made the pledge to actively ensure that past and currently serving armed forces personnel and their loved ones are not in any way disadvantaged because of their service, and I am delighted we have received the Bronze Award from the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme. We are committed to ensuring we support our serving military personnel and their families, along with our veterans and receiving this award is an important milestone on that journey.”