Most ex-Service personnel adapt and re-integrate into civilian life without experiencing significant difficulty. The most frequently encountered difficulties on leaving the tri-services are problems with accommodation, employment and finance. However, a minority will experience mental health problems and a small but significant proportion of ex-service personnel develop more severe psychological difficulties. Those who experience mental health problems are also likely to encounter welfare difficulties.
The Scottish Government wants people who have served in the Armed Forces to have better access to NHS services. This includes ‘priority treatment’ where the illness is service related, and to better understand Veterans, their needs and their ability to access a broad range of services.
The development of Veteran First Point – Highland
Veterans First Point Highland service builds on existing services and partnerships to:-
Develop sustainable packages of support, and, when appropriate, healthcare which focus on Veterans and their families;
Provide a single point of access in Inverness with extended reach in rural localities being developed on a scheduled outreach basis;
Deliver welfare support by Peer Support Workers who are themselves Veterans and act as cultural peers;
Facilitate access to NHS care and treatment, in particular to existing health services, both generic and specialist;
Deliver treatment, including psychological therapies to those Veterans who are unable to access it through routine processes. This includes the development of recovery pathways for both combat and non-combat related difficulties;
Provide welfare and social support to those in receipt of treatment, to promote their recovery and to assist them in maintaining their own well-being.
Service Location and Access
The principle access point to the service is the Poppyscotland Centre located at Strothers Lane in Inverness with remote and rural access on an outreach basis currently being developed.
Veterans can self-refer by accessing the centre between the hours of 10.00am-4pm Monday to Friday or by telephoning between the hours of 9am-5pm Monday-Friday on 01463 710300.