Veteran Friendly Practice 


Frome Medical Practice supporting veterans with their health care needs

Frome Medical Practice has recently been accredited as a Veteran Friendly Practice and is mark-ing Armed Forces Day with the launch of information and advice on its website for veterans and their families. Armed Forces Day takes place on 24th June and is an opportunity to show support for men and women who make up the Armed Forces community: from currently serving troops to service families, veterans and cadets.

Dr Dan Cook, who is helping lead the veteran friendly work at the practice, said, “The team at Frome Medical Practice understands the importance of meeting the health care needs of veterans in our community and we are delighted to now be an accredited Veteran Friendly Practice. We’re now asking for any of our patients who previously served in the armed forces or is a member of a service family to let us know. Making us aware of this will help us to ensure we are giving you all the support available.”

“Our aim is that veterans in our community will know how to register with us and will feel confi-dent that we will understand their needs and know how to help them. As well as identifying veter-ans within our existing patient list, we are training our staff to better understand the needs of vet-erans and supporting veterans with referrals to organisations that can provide them with further help and advice.” 

The Veteran Friendly Practice accreditation scheme is organised by the Royal College of General Practitioners in partnership with NHS England and NHS Improvement, and it helps ensure the NHS is better able to meet health commitments set out in the Armed Forces Covenant. The scheme supports practices to deliver the best possible care and treatment for patients who have served in the armed forces, through better identification of veteran patients, training and support to in-crease staff understanding of the health need of veterans and the services available to them. 

Veteran friendly GP practices are expected to appoint Clinical Leads for this area of work and at Frome Medical Practice this role and the veteran friendly work is being led by two of the existing GPs at the practice, Dr Susie MacDonald and Dr Dan Cook. Both these GPs have a specialist knowledge of military related health conditions and the kinds of veteran specific health services available. 

Prior to joining medical school, Dr Cook served in the Queen Alexandra’s Royal Army Nursing Corps (QARANC) as a Staff Nurse, with the majority of his service being based at 16 Close Support Medical Regiment. He was deployed to Afghanistan in 2006. Dr MacDonald is a a Regimental Medical Officer for 6 Regiment Army Air Corps, where she is an Army Reservist. She spends two days a week at 20 Brigade Headquarters as their Resilience and Optimisation Medical Office and is married to a regular Army Officer, who serves with The Royal Lancers but is currently posted to Warminster. 

Dr MacDonald said, “I have lived in Tidworth, Swindon, Edinburgh and Catterick Garrison before moving here so I have some understanding of how difficult it is to link up healthcare when moving around, as well as the challenge of linking NHS and military health records. I am the doctor for Regular and Reserve soldiers, supporting them through their careers, and carry out discharge medicals, so see veterans at all stages, both in service and afterwards.” 

“Service people and their families face challenges which are unique to them, and my aim here at Frome Medical Practice is to keep the team at the practice well informed, in order to ensure we can be as helpful to veterans and service families as possible.” 

Please use our online form to let us know if you’re a veteran or have a family member who was / is in the armed forces.

Read more about what being a veteran friendly practice means 

Published: Jun 13, 2023