BSW ICB appoints Armed Forces Single Point of Contact

BSW ICB has appointed Richard Marshall to the new role of Armed Forces Single Point of Contact to provide support to members of the Armed Forces and their families in BSW.

The new post provides a single point of contact and care coordination support to the many armed forces families in our area as well as offering support and guidance to navigate the NHS and prevent disadvantages in terms of health and wellbeing and accessing services.

A former Royal Navy officer, Richard served for over 30 years in a variety of roles, both at sea and ashore including operational tours of Bosnia and Iraq, and deployments to many parts of the globe. His shore appointments included commanding the military component within GCHQ and being the Commander of British Forces and the Queen’s representative in the British Indian Ocean Territory.

On leaving the Navy in 2014 he began working in primary care as a practice manager, a career path he followed in two separate practices prior to joining BSW ICB in July.

The post of Armed Forces Single Point of Contact is part of a national pilot called Op Community and is designed to provide support and continuity of care to the Armed Forces families, veterans, and reservists.

We caught up with Richard to ask him about his new role.

What is the Armed Forces Single Point of Contact (SPOC) role in BSW?
The Families SPOC is a pilot designed to provide support to Armed Forces families throughout the ICS area, providing a single point of contact and care coordination support framework system. Current activity is centred on building comprehensive relationships with all other agencies involved in support to veterans, reservists and service families. In addition, BSW is engaged at national level in supporting the work of developing shared care records and improving the method of patient record transfer. The SPOC is also helping improve the ways in which veterans and their families can be identified within general practice using coherent coding and templates.

What are your first impressions of BSW ICB?  The people here are lovely and I have been made to feel very welcome by everyone I’ve met.  There is a very positive ‘feel’ within the team and I am looking forward to contributing to the future progress.

What do you think are the main challenges in your role?  This is a brand new role for BSW and so it will be the coordination of all existing Armed Forces work and the development of the external links with the military families in the region.  As a former Practice Manager I know that there are significant issues around the transfer of medical records between the Ministry of Defence and NHS and helping to smooth that path will also be one of my main tasks.