Should you need urgent health advice please contact your GP or call NHS 111. In an emergency please visit A&E or call 999

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Support for veterans and their families

Young interracial family with little children having breakfast.

All veterans and their family members and carers can access a range of specialist healthcare and support created to provide treatment and care for many different problems.

Who counts as a veteran?

A veteran is anyone who has served in the armed forces for at least 1 day. Reservists who are not mobilised are also given the status of veteran until they return to actively serving.

What support is available for my family?

In Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland

Op Community is a telephone line for the armed forces community (including veterans, reservists, serving personnel, families and the wider armed forces community) to offer support and guidance around navigating NHS services and advice regarding other services that can support with issues.

Call the support line on: 0116 225 6858. 

The line is open Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm, excluding public holidays.

You can find more information on their webpage.

National support

Click on the links below to access specialist support services available nationwide.

Find a list of charities supporting veterans and their families.

Find more information about support for armed forces families.

The Veterans Welfare Service (VWS) provides 1-to-1 support to all veterans, their families and carers.

Veterans and their families and carers can access dedicated mental health support services run by the MoD, the NHS and mental health charities.

If you have been sexually assaulted or abused while in the armed forces or as a veteran, there are NHS services and charities that can give you help and advice.

Find help after rape and sexual assault

Forward Assist’s Salute Her UK: advice and support for women who are veterans or currently serving

Useful links

NHS – Veterans, service leavers and non-mobilised reservists

ChatHealth Logo

Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust runs a confidential secure text messaging service for parents of children aged 0-19 years called Chat Health. The service operates Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm, excluding bank holidays. All texts will be responded to by a public health nurse (health visitor/school nurse) within 24 hours. Outside of the service working hours, you’ll receive a message back to inform you that your text will be responded to once the line reopens.

Should you require urgent health advice in the meantime, please contact your GP, visit an NHS walk-in centre or call NHS 111. For emergencies, dial 999 or visit A&E.

Page last reviewed: 07-08-2023

Next review due: 07-08-2026