JUST 21 injured veterans have accessed a new £300million rehab centre in 18 months.
Charities are calling on the MoD and NHS to get more heroes using the taxpayer-funded facility.
Treatment at the Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre is only guaranteed to current personnel.
Meanwhile, the thousands who suffered injuries on the frontline and later left the service must go through the NHS — putting more strain on hospitals.
Ministers are now looking at whether veterans could use the centre to relieve “high-pressure areas” in the health service.
The DMRC at Stanford Hall, near Loughborough, Leics, opened in 2018 — replacing Headley Court, Surrey.
Those who suffered injuries, such as amputations, are offered care based on individual merits.
Ex-service personnel can be referred there by the NHS, too — but just 21 have passed through its doors so far.
Phil Hall, from Help for Heroes, said: “It really is a centre of excellence for rehabilitation and we are aware the veterans we support are asking for increased access.
“This would require a change in stance from current MoD and NHS policy.”
Commons Defence Committee chair Tobias Ellwood called for “more co-ordination” and “common sense”.
He added: “This country has a duty of care to those in uniform and those who have left by giving them the best treatment.”
Veterans Minister Johnny Mercer said talks are ongoing between the MoD and health department over using DMRC to aid the NHS and “how that could benefit veterans”.
£67m for homes – 11k empty
DEFENCE chiefs spent £67million renting properties for troops — and left 11,500 homes empty.
Government figures show £34million went on private rentals in London.
The MoD also spent £11million on homes in the South West, £3.5million in the South East and £6million in the Midlands.
Top Brass admit 11,500 are empty but insists they are needed for personnel who “move around the country regularly”.
However, up to 2,600 have not been occupied for three years — and maintenance of the empty homes costs £25million.
The TaxPayers’ Alliance called it a “waste”.