Military Veterans

Military veterans urged to sign up for priority NHS treatment in Wales

Former members of the armed forces in Wales are being urged to ensure they let their GP know that they have served their country as they may be entitled to priority treatment.

Veterans are entitled to receive priority access to NHS treatment for any conditions which are a result of their time in military service, including Regulars, Reservists and those who did National Service.

Health and social care workers may not be aware of the former military status of their patients or clients. It is important they can identify veterans to provide the appropriate support. Some veterans either don’t consider it relevant to disclose, or may not even consider themselves veterans.

Veterans are former members of the Royal Navy, Army, Royal Marines, Royal Air Force, or the Merchant Navy and fishermen who served in a vessel that supported a military operation by HM Forces.

Where the referring GP and consultant agree that the patient’s condition is related to their military service they have been asked to prioritise veterans over other patients with the same level of clinical need. Veterans will not be given priority over other patients with more urgent clinical needs.

Identifying the individual as a veteran can help with the appropriate prioritisation of access to NHS services and ensure that any potential physical and mental health and social issues are explored.

Mental Health Difficulties

Don’t suffer in silence, please contact the local Health Board Team using links below and they will try and help you get on with your life.

Veterans’ NHS Wales is a specialised, priority service for individuals who have served in the Armed Forces, at any time in their lives and who are experiencing mental health difficulties related specifically to their military service. Information on priority healthcare for other NHS services is available here
Each Local Health Board (LHB) has appointed an experienced clinician as a Veteran Therapist (VT) with an interest or experience of military (mental) health problems. The VT will accept referrals from health care staff, GPs, veteran charities and self-referrals from ex-service personnel. The appropriate VT can be contacted by visiting the website link
Appointments will be arranged as close to the veteran’s home as possible in a suitable venue. The service is not able to respond to emergency referrals. Veterans in crisis should contact their GP or the Out of Hours Service. There is a Psychiatrist on-call at all Accident and Emergency Units in District General Hospitals.
Alternatively call 24/7 help line: CALL – 0800 132 737.