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An app designed to help three million ex-servicemen and women is being developed by a former Royal Navy lieutenant commander from North Yorkshire.

Press Release – New core research theme added to the hub

A new core research theme (pillar) has been added to the hub:- Exercise in Health and Wellbeing. 

Sport, exercise and physical activity have long been shown to improve the health of mind, body and quality of life.  Within this pillar we explore how the various disciplines within the exercise sciences can be applied to improve the overall health and well being to military veterans.

The principal aims are to use exercise-related interventions (ranging from high performance sport challenges to engaging in increase physical activity) to support military veterans and assist established networks and partners in recovery.  By optimising individual pathways to recovery we can aspire to improving overall health and prognosis for the military’s wounded, injured and sick.

Professor Glyn Howatson is now the Director of Research and Innovation in the Department of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation at Northumbria University and takes a lead on this theme.  He served for six years in the British Army with tours on Operation Granby in the Persian Gulf and the Balkans. He is a Fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine and the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences.  Glyn’s research interests predominantly lie in the physiological aspects of optimising human performance. He and his team largely focus on the response to exercise, enhancing recovery, and optimising physiological adaptation, health and wellbeing, where he has published over 100 full peer-reviewed papers. His work as an applied physiologist and researcher has contributed to the support of numerous international athletes that include World and Olympic medalists. More broadly, his work and expertise is being applied to wider populations in improving health and wellbeing.

Date: 17th January 2017

Press Release – Interviews have started in a research study into the health and social wellbeing of older limbless veterans

October 10th 2016

Interviews began last month in a national research study looking into the health and social wellbeing of older limbless veterans.  The study will help identify future care needs of older limbless military veterans.  The study uses in-depth narrative interviews investigating changes to physical, social and psychological needs over the life course.

Recruitment to the study is being carried out by one of our partners – BLESMA – a national organisation which supports limbless veterans for the duration of their lives.  There has been a lot of interest in the study.  So far recruitment is going well with over a third of interviewees recruited.  The aim is to recruit over 30 participants in total by Match 2017.  Veterans will take part in a series of three interviews over the space of a year talking about what support they have needed over the course of their lives.

Interviews were carried out with three participants by researchers from Northumbria University and partners from Anglia Ruskin University.  Some interesting initial themes are emerging already such as, differences between NHS and military medical care, and provision of support for Post-traumatic Stress Disorder.

The Northern Echo: New app could ease forces' veterans access to health and social care

Business _Military -Veterans -Hub _NewsMay 6, 2016

An app designed to help three million ex-servicemen and women is being developed by a former Royal Navy lieutenant commander from North Yorkshire.

Dr Matt Kiernan said the app aims to make information about health and social care services available to veterans in an easy to understand form.

It is being backed by Richmond MP Rishi Sunak who is seeking a meeting with Defence Minister Mark Lancaster to gain Government support for the project.

Dr Kiernan, of Hudswell, near Richmond, retired from the Royal Navy early on health grounds and is now a senior lecturer at the Northern Hub for Military Veterans and Families’ Research at Northumbria University in Newcastle.

Called the National Veteran Information Services Network – N-VISionN for short – the app would be free to ex-servicemen and women.

Dr Kiernan said: “The idea behind the app is to bring all the services available together in one place, to provide one simple to use point of contact. There is a great deal of help available, for example to deal with alcohol and substance misuse, but it is not always easy to access it.”

The app has been developed with the help of a company based in San Diego, California – RippleNami – which specialises in presenting information in a highly visual way using maps.


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