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Our veteran services and how to access them

SERVICES DURING COVID-19

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for our specialist services remains critical.

Although our clinical staff are unable to meet veterans in person, we have adapted and enhanced our phone and digital services to provide 1-1 therapy sessions, introduced a range of online resources on our website and offered access to our online peer support community.

With the Government advising the public to avoid non-essential travel following the outbreak of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), we are asking that visitors do not attend any of our treatment centres. This includes veterans, who will receive their treatment and support off-site.

Our 24-hour Helpline 0800 138 1619 remains available to all veterans and their families for confidential mental health advice and support. Our online self-help is also available for guidance and support.

THE VETERAN JOURNEY

Step 1 Referral

The first step for you to access our services is to contact our free 24-hour Helpline.

0800 138 1619

You will speak to an advisor who will ask you questions about your military service, areas of your life which you need help with, particularly your mental health, but also occupation, physical health, housing and finances or relationships.

Alternatively text 07537 173683 (standard charges may apply for texts) or email helpline@combatstress.org.uk.

Step 2 Assessment

Our team of mental health specialists will review your referral. If we think we can offer services that might be suitable for you, we will ask you to attend an assessment with a member of the team to discuss your issues. Sometimes there might be other services that are better suited to help you. Our teams will work with that service to help you access the treatment you need.

Step 3 Treatment

After assessment a personalised treatment pathway will be designed for you. This will include treatment modules delivered by our Clinical teams to help you with your mental health. Your treatment pathway might include modules from the following treatment packages: Building Resilience and Manage Better, Managing the Consequences of Trauma, Trauma-Focused Therapy and Looking to the Future.

Are we the right Service?

Who can we treat?

We offer treatment to veterans of the UK Armed Forces, non-operational reservists and former members of the Merchant Navy. They will be domiciled in the UK and registered with a UK GP and have complex trauma-related or stress-related mental health issues resulting from military service, such as:

  • PTSD
  • Complex-PTSD (this is PTSD plus some specific other difficulties)
  • Anxiety
  • Depression

Who are we not able to treat?

Veterans who currently:

  • Have difficulties that severely affect their relationships with others
  • Are experiencing severe psychotic symptoms
  • Are at high risk, whether it be self-harm, feeling suicidal or at risk of causing harm to others
  • Are experiencing a mental or physical health crisis

Experience mental health problems mainly due to trauma or adverse life events that did not happen during their military service e.g. childhood trauma.

 


 

Waiting Time Information

We aim to carry out a screening assessment of referrals within 2 working days, to decide initially if our services are likely to be suitable for the veteran who has been referred or self-referred.  The screening assessment sometimes involves contacting the veteran, but usually does not, and is based on the referral information we receive.

We aim to provide a full clinical assessment (which always involves seeing or speaking to the veteran) within 4 weeks of receiving a referral, and to provide treatment within 14 weeks later (i.e., within 18 weeks of receiving a referral).

Our waiting times vary across the UK according to demand, with times fluctuating on a weekly basis above and below the target times mentioned above, but usually not to a significant extent.

 

COMBAT STRESS SERVICES

Self-help

Self-help Online

Self-help

Developed by the clinical experts at Combat Stress, these resources aim to provide guidance and support to former military personnel experiencing mental health issues.

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Paul's story: 'Combat Stress is alive and vibrant... life starts again here'