Russell Miller

A Team Player — On A World-Class Team
LT Russell Miller, MD, Medical Corps, USN

“The facilities and resources that we have access to as physicians in the Navy are as good as it gets. Plus, I couldn't ask for better colleagues. Everybody has the same goals and interests in mind – and we really want to work together.”
— LT Russell Miller, MD, Medical Corps, USN

In the field of medicine, teamwork can play an important role in the process of caring for patients. It can also make the job of a medical professional even more fulfilling.

Dr. Russell Miller, a Navy Physician (and former professional soccer player), appreciates the team mentality – and the unique camaraderie he has with fellow members of the Navy Medical Corps.

“It’s a much more collegial atmosphere. If I have a question, like a concern about a patient’s heart, I just walk down the hall and ask one of the heart doctors,” he explains. “Often, they’ll say, ‘Why don’t you bring him over? We’ll talk together.’ It’s a system that is really not possible in other places when insurance gets involved. But here, it happens all the time.”

Being in a situation where financial interests aren’t influencing the direction of patient care is something LT Miller considers to be a huge advantage. He elaborates: “The education and experiences we have give us a much more rounded experience than in civilian programs. Even the attendings are very accessible and approachable, which I think is lacking in a lot of programs where the bottom line consumes so much time.”

Beyond the unprecedented access to information and people, LT Miller admits he’s also had the opportunity to treat a wider range of medical issues than most of his civilian counterparts. From malaria to fungal infections, post-blast injuries to multidisciplinary issues, he points out, “People come back from deployment with things that you will never see in a civilian hospital.”

How did LT Miller find his way into this position? After graduating magna cum laude from the University of North Carolina Charlotte, he earned his medical degree in 2007 from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS) at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Md.

“This was a great decision,” he says. “I was paid to go to medical school (at USUHS) and had no financial concerns during that time. I was able to concentrate on my education and had plenty of disposable income for enjoying myself during my time off.”

Currently, LT Miller is in the process of finishing a three-year pulmonary critical care fellowship at the Naval Medical Center San Diego. He’s completed his internship and residency there while also staying on as Chief Resident prior to becoming a fellow. And along the way, he’s earned a variety of awards – including Navy Achievement Medals for performance and research.

Making The World A Better Place

“We’re trying to take care of lots of different issues in different places, and better the world.

We’re working to decrease AIDS in Africa. We work to win hearts and minds with the USNS Mercy. And we work to make our Active Duty personnel know that, when they’re deployed, their family members are going to get the best level of care.

So as far away as Africa or as close as the next clinic patient, we’re all trying to make sure that the world’s a better place."

— LT Russell Miller, MD, Medical Corps, USN