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Stratford MP visits local Ex Armed Forces Mental Health Service

Mr Zahawi was keen to see and hear from those who helped create this innovative approach to service development, with veterans at the heart of the process from the outset.

He was joined by Simon Gilby, Chief Executive of Coventry and Warwickshire Partnership NHS Trust. Mr Zahawi’s visit granted him access to a number of key staff including Dr Dan Barnard, Lead Clinical Psychologist for the service alongside Lynne Davidson, Hub Lead.  In addition he met with Jenny Bell, Mental Health Nurse and Nicholas Caswell, Ex Armed Forces Community Action Team Leader, all of whom spent time with Mr Zahawi explaining the importance of the approach and the impact the service is achieving.

The service launched as a collaborative partnership in 2017 between Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Partnership Trust, Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, North Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust, Walking with the Wounded, and Mental Health Matters. It was established to achieve joined up care pathways through a single doorway approach for veterans across the Midlands and East region. The service has made great strides and intends to be seen and recognised as an NHS exemplar service across England in its treatment pathway for ex armed services personnel.

Dr Dan Barnard, Clinical Psychologist at Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Partnership Trust, said about the visit: “I’m grateful to Mr Zahawi for showing great interest in our service, recognising the importance of the work we are doing and the results we are achieving as a whole.”

Mr. Zahawi commented on his visit: “I’m delighted I’ve had this opportunity to meet with some of the tremendous staff involved in this inspirational service.

“Clearly I recognise the difficulties often faced by the NHS to achieve what they and their partners want in service change. Evidently this collaboration with ex armed service personnel in understanding their unique needs, tailoring and delivering NHS services for veterans in collaboration with them, is working well and I’m pleased to promote their efforts back in Westminster.”

Veterans’ Mental Health TIL Service operate a 24/7, 365 days per year single point of enquiry (0300 323 0137) for initial triage and flow through to the 3 service hubs for veteran-specific assessment, care planning and on to NHS treatment local to the service user.

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