All military veterans are now entitled to priority NHS treatment across the UK except Northern Ireland.
Until now, only veterans who had received a payout, disability assessment or army pension for their injuries were entitled to rapid referral on the NHS.
But in a change of heart, the DoH has now ruled that everyone injured or made ill ‘as a result of their service to their country should get priority access to NHS treatment, based on clinical need'.
GPs are expected to mention veteran status in their referral letter and judge whether the condition is service-related before moving former army personnel up the queue.
In a long-standing degenerative condition, such as arthritis, this is often a matter of clinical judgment.
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