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Medical emergencies happen and we need people who can take charge when they do. Whether you’re in a hospital or clinical setting, on a ship or submarine, or out in the field alongside fellow Sailors or Marines, you will use advanced medical training to save lives. The bravest fighters in the world put their lives in your hands. And it’s your job to ensure they have the care they need.
Perform emergency medical treatment on SEALs, Seabees, Marines and other military personnel injured in the field
Perform emergency dental treatment as well as construct dental crowns and bridges, process dental X-rays and operate X-ray equipment
Serve as an operating room technician for general and specialized surgery
Help administer a wide range of preventive care and medications, including immunizations and intravenous fluids
Maintain patient treatment records, conduct research and perform clinical tests
Those in the Hospital Corpsman Advanced Technical Field go beyond the duties of Hospital Corpsmen, working in austere and challenging environments while saving lives. Each of the three classifications has its own responsibilities:
Provide advanced medical care and operational services for Marine Reconnaissance, USMC Special Operations Forces and Special Operations Command personnel
Engage as a team member in direct action, special reconnaissance, foreign internal defense, irregular and unconventional warfare
Rescue patients and deliver emergency care from the back of a helicopter
Perform aircrew duties and En Route Care (ERC) for routine illness and emergent patients
Support Search and Rescue (SAR), tactical evacuation (TECEVAC), Medical Evacuation (MEDEVAC), casualty evacuation (CASEVAC) and Combat Search & Rescue (CSAR) for Navy and Marine Corps Aviation
Provide basic medicine and assist medical officers in prevention and treatment of diving related illnesses, injuries associated with deep sea diving and hyperbaric conditions
Operate, test and repair all USN diving equipment
Perform underwater inspections, harbor/port/ship security inspections, conduct ordnance searches, rescue personnel, engage in special warfare and small boat operations
Operate Swimmer Delivery Vehicle Dry-Deck Shelter system and submarine Lock-in/Lock-out systems
There are no part-time jobs available for this career track.
In medical support, you have the most diverse range of work environments in the Navy. Your job will likely take you all over the world—and far out of your comfort zone.
As a Hospital Corpsman, you could be assigned to a Navy medical treatment facility, like an on-base hospital or clinic. You could also work on an aircraft carrier in the middle of the ocean, or a submarine in the depths of the sea. You will work alongside Navy nurses and other medical professionals to be trained as a skilled first responder, whether your skills are needed bedside or in the field.
If you choose to go the Hospital Corpsman Advanced Technical Field route, you will work in extreme and sometimes dangerous conditions. From deep sea diving to combat missions to flying up in MH-60 Romeo helicopters, you will train outside the realm of conventional military forces to prepare for any mission. You may work independent of a physician or under supervision in this program.
Serving part-time as a Reservist, your duties will be carried out during your scheduled drilling and training periods. During monthly drilling, Hospital Corpsmen in the Navy Reserve typically work at a location close to their homes.
For Annual Training, Hospital Corpsmen may serve anywhere in the world, whether on a ship at sea or bases and installations on shore.
Take a moment to learn more about the general roles and responsibilities of Reservists.
After you attend Boot Camp, you’ll report to Fort Sam Houston, TX to attend “A” school for 14 weeks. Here, you’ll develop a working knowledge of basic principles and techniques of patient care and first aid procedures in preparation for your first assignment. Throughout your career, you’ll have ample opportunity to gain advanced medical skills from radiology, to physical therapy, to dental care, to heart surgery. These skills will be necessary to maintain the physical health, and on occasion, save the lives of Sailors and Marines across the fleet. You could even deploy overseas with the Marines as a Fleet Marine Force Corpsman, which requires specialty training.
After Boot Camp, you’ll report to Fort Sam Houston, TX to attend “A” school for 14 weeks. Here, you’ll develop a working knowledge of basic principles and techniques of patient care and first aid procedures. After Corpsman “A” School, HM-ATF candidates track to one of three advanced training paths:
Areas of training include but are not limited to basic reconnaissance, airborne operations, combatant diving, demolitions, clinical diagnostics, advanced paramedical skills, Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS), basic surgical anesthesia, basic veterinary medicine and basic dental exams
Areas of training include but are not limited to advanced fluid resuscitation, administration and management of Advanced Life Support medications, use of emergency medical equipment, rescue and recovery devices and patient handling
Areas of training include but are not limited to diving physics, scuba and surface-supplied air diving, recognition and treatment of diving related illnesses
Automatic promotion opportunities are available but are competitive and based on completion of pipeline. It’s also important to note that specialized training received and work experience gained in the course of service can lead to valuable credentialing and occupational opportunities in related fields.
There’s no better way to begin a successful career in healthcare than by serving in the medical support division of America’s Navy. You’ll receive training in everything from surgery to radiology, physical therapy to respiratory medicine, and more. Beyond this, you’ll have many opportunities to get the hands-on experience and credentials medical assistants require in the civilian world.
Most of what you do in the Navy Reserve is considered training. The basic Navy Reserve commitment involves training a minimum of one weekend a month (referred to as drilling) and two weeks a year (referred to as Annual Training) – or the equivalent.
Hospital Corpsmen in the Navy Reserve serve in an Enlisted role. Before receiving the ongoing professional training that comes with the job, initial training requirements must be met.
For current or former military Enlisted service members: Prior experience satisfies the initial Recruit Training requirement – so you will not need to go through Boot Camp again.
For those without prior military experience: You will need to meet the initial Recruit Training requirement by attending boot camp for seven to nine weeks in Great Lakes, IL. This training course will prepare you for service in the Navy Reserve and count as your first Annual Training.
Promotion opportunities are regularly available but competitive and based on performance. It’s also important to note that specialized training received and work experience gained in the course of service can lead to valuable credentialing and occupational opportunities in related fields.
Beyond offering access to professional credentials and certifications, Navy training in the field of medical support can translate to credit hours toward a bachelor’s or associate degree through the American Council on Education. You may continue your education through:
Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges Degree Network System (SOC DNS)
Navy College Program and Tuition Assistance
Post-9/11 GI Bill
Beyond offering access to professional credentials and certifications, Navy training in the field of medical support can translate to credit hours toward a bachelor’s or associate degree through the American Council on Education. You may also continue your education through opportunities like the following:
General qualifications may vary depending upon whether you’re currently serving, whether you’ve served before or whether you’ve never served before. Any illegal involvement with drugs may be disqualifying.
To become a Hospital Corpsman you must have U.S. citizenship, a high school diploma or equivalent, normal color perception, vision correctable to 20/20 and meet eligibility requirements for a security clearance.
If you go the Hospital Corpsman Technical Field route, you must have U.S. citizenship, a high school diploma or equivalent, normal color perception, vision correctable to 20/20 and meet eligibility requirements for a security clearance.
Additionally, you should:
Be 28 years or younger
Agree to a minimum 6-year enlistment obligation
Undergo a Physical Screening Test (PST) and meet the following minimum standards:
Swim: 12:30 (1.5 miles)
Run: 10:30 (500 yd / 450m)
Meet standards for Student Naval Aviator (SNA)
Have the intelligence, maturity and ability to carry out the physical demands of combat while simultaneously learning medical procedures and methodologies
Have good communication skills, writing and arithmetic ability, manual dexterity and a good memory
Have a sincere interest in providing general health care
Be resourceful, dependable and trustworthy