Veteran Aware

Covenant banner What is the Armed Forces Covenant

The Armed Forces Covenant is not a charitable organisation. It is a promise from the nation to those who serve or who have served, and their families, which says we will do all we can to ensure they are treated fairly and are not disadvantaged in their day-to-day lives. The Armed Forces Covenant relies on the people, communities, and businesses of the UK to actively support it in order to make a difference

The Armed Forces Covenant: What is means for you

The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust (PAHT) signed the Armed Forces Covenant in October 2022, demonstrating our commitment to supporting veterans as follows:

  • To ensure no member of the armed forces community is disadvantaged in the provision of healthcare compared to other members of the general public
  • To ensure members of the Armed Forces community retain their relative position on any NHS waiting list if they move around the country if for example they are posted elsewhere.
  • Special treatment may be appropriate especially for the injured or bereaved
  • Supporting the Armed Forces community as an employer
  • Signposting to extra services for the armed forces community run by charities/other organisations
  • Provide an on-going programme of training for our people in the provision of care to veterans and those currently serving in the armed forces
  • Establishing a network of veterans’ champions across all service divisions at PAHT

Armed forces regulars, reservists, veterans or military family members attending the emergency department (ED), or a clinic appointment at PAHT, should advise the receptionist of their military connection on arrival.

Supporting as an employer

How we aim to support members of the armed forces and veterans into our organisation is detailed in the Step Into Health agreement signed in June 2023 which connects employers in the NHS to talent from the Armed Forces community.  You can download a copy here >.

The committment is as follows:

The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust recognises the value serving personnel, veterans and military families bring to our workforce.

We will seek to support the Step into Health programme by agreeing to the following:

  • Reviewing recruitment practices and removing any barriers to recruiting members of the Armed Forces community.
  • Sharing dedicated Step into Health contact details. · Building a relationship with the Career Transition Partnership (CTP).
  • Using the Step into Health branding to promote consistent messages about the programme.
  • Using the Step into Health candidate system to record interactions with potential candidates and to refer between NHS organisations as required.

Our organisation will also enhance our commitment to Step into Health by:

  • Hosting insight days/virtual events to raise awareness of NHS careers with the Armed Forces community.
  • Offering work placements/tailored support to the Armed Forces community and provide support to those who apply for a vacancy.
  • Providing support for those service leavers who have additional needs.
  • Promoting the programme and sharing messaging via our website and social media.
  • Establishing an alumni network for staff who have found employment through the programme.
  • Partnering with other NHS organisations in the region to share best practice and make efficient use of resources.
  • Supporting candidates in the NHS who may wish to settle elsewhere
  • Supporting, where possible, forces families who need to locate for service reasons
  • Liaising, when required, with other NHS organisations who have hosted candidates moving to your region

Additional support resources

Defence Medical Welfare Service (DMWS)The DMWS is an independent charity providing an independent and confidential medical welfare service.

SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity: Providing lifelong support for veterans and their families across Essex and Herts

The Veterans’ Gateway: A first point of contact for veterans and their families, putting them in touch with the organisations best placed to help with the information, advice and support they need – from healthcare and housing to employability, finances, personal relationships and more.

Combat Stress: Supporting former servicemen and women’s mental health.

Help for Heroes: Providing recovery and support for the armed forces community whose lives are affected by their service, no matter when they served.

Blesma: Supports all serving and ex-service men and women who have lost limbs, or lost the use of limbs or eyes, to rebuild their lives by providing rehabilitation activities and welfare support.

Forces Employment Charity: The Forces Employment Charity provides life-long, life-changing support, job opportunities, and training to service leavers, veterans, reservists and their families, regardless of circumstances, rank, length of service, or reason for leaving.

Inpatient comment:

Everyone offered words of such reassurance and kindness. I felt so cared for and the communication with me at all times was fantastic.