News

September 29th 2016

Forces friendly health trust receives prestigious MOD award

The county’s specialist mental health and learning disabilities NHS trust, has been given an award by the Ministry of Defence, in recognition of its support for members of the Armed Forces.

Lincolnshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (LPFT) received the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS), Bronze award, for demonstrating the values of the prestigious Armed Forces Covenant.

The covenant was created to ensure that members of the Armed Forces community, both past and present, are treated with fairness and respect and receive the same access to services as any other citizen.

Bronze awards are given to employers who promote themselves as Armed Forces friendly, have volunteer reservists on their books and pledge their support to those who help defend our country.

The scheme was launched in 2014 and there are currently 41 employers across the whole of the East Midlands with Bronze awards, 91 with Silver and only three with Gold.

LPFT Chair Paul Devlin said being recognised as an organisation which supports forces personnel was something to be very proud of.

“For some, making the transition from military to civilian life can be difficult, or perhaps that transition came after experiencing a traumatic event in the line of duty,” he said.

“If that is indeed the case, then we must ensure we offer the right support at the right time for those in the Armed Forces community.

“We also recognise and welcome the valuable skills and experiences those from the Armed Forces can bring to our workforce.

“We are delighted to have initially received the Bronze Award and will be working towards the Silver and Gold in the near future to further underline our support to forces personnel.”

In addition to employing Armed Forces Reservists, LPFT also has a dedicated Veterans’ Mental Health Service, which offers specific care and treatment, and point of contact for forces personnel who may be experiencing mental health problems.

The Trust also has a designated inpatient facility for members of the Armed Forces, based at Pilgrim Hospital, in Boston.

LPFT’s Regional Veterans’ Lead Paula Jelly said:  “The Jubilee Suite in the Department of Psychiatry provides a safe environment for serving personnel and offers a range of evidence-based treatments.

“We also work in partnership with local teams and third sector organisations which allows us to create crucial professional relationships with other support agencies and the MOD.”

John Wilson, the MOD’s regional employer engagement director for the East Midlands, said:  “We welcome the support from LPFT and are delighted that the Trust is looking to develop its relationship with local military units. We look forward to working with them in the coming months.”

“We are delighted to have initially received the Bronze Award and will be working towards the Silver and Gold in the near future to further underline our support to forces personnel.”