The Veteran friendly practice accreditation

Last updated Friday 13th October 2023

The Veteran friendly practice accreditation

Veterans’ healthcare toolkit: The Veteran friendly accreditation (

NHS England and NHS Improvement are offering to accredit GP practices as ‘veteran friendly’. This programme enables practice to deliver the best possible care and treatment for patients who have served in the armed forces.

Nearly 1,000 GP practices in England are already accredited through this programme. We support these practices to identify and code their veterans, and to appoint a clinical lead who undertakes training and other activities related to veteran healthcare.

We provide accredited practices with an information pack to help increase their understanding of the health needs of veterans, and the services available to them.

The accreditation is voluntary but is included in the key commitments of the NHS Long Term Plan, which states: ‘To ensure all GPs in England are equipped to best serve our veterans and their families, over the next five years we will roll out a veterans accreditation scheme in conjunction with the Royal College of GPs.’

Accreditation is currently open to GP practices in England. For more information, please email

Accreditation lasts for three years, and practices must commit to the following:

  1. Ask patients registering with the surgery if they have ever served in the British Armed Forces.
  2. Code it on the GP computer system. We recommend writing it out rather than using Read codes as these vary according to which computer system is used. We recommend that the term ‘Military Veteran’ is used.
  3. Have a clinical lead for veterans in the surgery. This should be a registered health care professional, but not necessarily a GP – it could be a nurse or paramedic
  4. This clinical lead is required to undertake dedicated training, attend training events (RCGP or other provider), stay up to date with the latest research and innovations and ensure that the practice is meeting the health commitments of the Armed Forces Covenant. They should also be available to provide advice to colleagues, as well as possibly seeing veterans themselves.
  5. Eligible practices should have a CQC ‘good’ rating or higher

This is also a Forces connect app available that lists a range of services to view what is available across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Apple or Google store.

Forces Connect on the App Store (

Mental health problems are common and can affect anyone, including veterans, serving personnel, reservists and their families. It is important to get help and support if you or someone you know has mental health problems.

For further information, please click here.