Veteran Aware accreditation awarded to City Health Care Partnership (CHCP)

Picture of soldiers marching towards the Union Jack flag.

A social enterprise that was inspired to support Veterans across the whole organisation following a training session at Catterick Garrison has become accredited as Veteran Aware.

Staff from City Health Care Partnership (CHCP) attended a Let’s Talk service training session at the Garrison focusing on how best to support Veterans psychologically with issues they experience after leaving the Forces ‘family’ or from Operational Service.

The training left staff with a desire to do more to support Veterans, leading to signing of the Armed Forces Covenant in June 2020. The charity subsequently gained an ERS Bronze Award and pledged to Step into Health.

This led on to applying for Veteran Aware accreditation.

CHCP provides a wide range of high quality, health and care services in community settings across Hull, the East Riding of Yorkshire, Knowsley and St Helens.

Through its charity, City Health Care Partnership Foundation, it gives extra support to the communities it works in by offering small grants to voluntary and community groups who are helping to improve local health and wellbeing.

Accreditation was carried out by the Veterans Covenant Healthcare Alliance (VCHA), a national NHS team. The VCHA’s aim is to ensure that patients from the Armed Forces Community, including families and their children, are not disadvantaged in terms of access to and outcomes of healthcare, as a result of their military life in line with the principles of the Armed Forces Covenant.

It does this by developing, sharing and driving the implementation of best practice, while at the same time raising standards for everyone. Its original remit was to accredit all NHS trusts in England, but through the NHS Long Term Plan has since expanded to hospices and the Independent Care Sector.

The Armed Forces Covenant is a promise by the nation ensuring that those who serve, or who have served, in the armed forces, and their families, are treated fairly.

The East Ridings has a large Armed Forces Community; about 27,000 Veterans and nearly 66,750 spouses/partners and children live in the area with a Regular serving population of 840 personnel and 410 Reservists amounting to about 16 per cent of the overall population.

Prof Tim Briggs CBE, VCHA chairman, said: “This was a truly outstanding application from a social enterprise that clearly cares about those who’ve served. It very clearly meets the requirements of the Armed Forces Covenant and our manifesto points and I’m delighted to have them on board. Well done!”

Tony Armstrong, Widening Scope (Projects) Lead, said: “CHCP has a clear set of values. I’m absolutely delighted to have worked with them on their application and look forward to seeing how they develop their Armed Forces work over the next few years.”

Josh Willey, HR Project Lead, said: “We are proud to achieve the Veteran Aware Accreditation which demonstrates our commitment to supporting members of the Armed Forces community. Aligned with the principles of the Armed Forces Covenant, we are committed to ensuring equitable access to healthcare and we will continue our journey to becoming a more Forces-friendly organisation.”

The VCHA will be holding its annual best practice national event on 20 September 23 at The Barbican in London. This is aimed at staff from NHS Trusts, care homes, and independents as well as from military charities.

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