Discussion in 'Military Medicine' started by EMH, 07.31.08.
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Sweet!! Dude you rock
Do we have a definitive answer yet on whether or not ASR/ADSW participants are elgible for the new GI Bill?
I talked to someone in the education office who said that deployments are all that will count as time for the new GI bill. ADSW & AGR doesn't count. I'd also say that could either be wrong or that it will change. Congress has passed the law that created the new GI bill but the VA who administers it hasn't come out with a detailed description of how it will work yet.
For those who already joined and also for those considering, I found this document to have a load of good information on the Medical Corps in the Army. Some of it pertains to full time Army but it all applies to the medical corps. When someone finds something really helpful like this please share.
Has anyone heard any more about the 2 recruit mission that had been discussed earlier?
Merry Christmas and all that.
There's a lot of good info on here and I just wanted to say I think it'd be great if we make this a sticky. Thanks,
So, can you participate in the ASR if you already have a service commitment in the Guard, or is this for new accessions only? For example, if one already has a six year obligation to the Army National Guard for an ROTC scholarship, can they take the ASR and just tack on more obligation?
There is no additional obligation for ASR.
As far as I know, the only thing that will preclude you from getting ASR is doing STRAP.
There is a checklist I believe on the NY guard website for the process of becoming commissioned. I have contacted a recruiter in my state, but with the holidays and leave schedules, contact may be spotty. What sorts of things are there that need to be done that I can work on independently, i.e. resume, CV, run time, etc? I wasn't sure how much of the checklist was applicable to the other 49 states, although I imagine most of it is.
Is anyone aware of a list of medical units? I have found a Guard site that had a googlemap app of them, but manually looking through them for med units would be very tedious. Plus it just has addresses, not POC...
Does anyone know if we can get the GI BILL when we are going to OBC?
I have chapter 30 benefits and It would be awesome if I could use them.
If you are an ASR, AND you, like me, were prior service for 4 yrs with 4 yrs of IRR, can you please PM me...muchos grassy-ass
Congrats on this, amindwalker. Nicely done.
Hey Mr. Freeze...
I wouldn't reinvent the wheel, but if you're expecting some free-time to kill, I'd work on making sure you have the following information on hand:
- Residences. Addresses, timeline in month/years, and the address/phone of someone who knew you at each address. Going back 7 years for all physical addresses (including dorms, etc., not PO Boxes).
- Employment. Timeline, title, hous per week, basic job description, supervisor name and address and phone. Going back 7 years (or to 16yo).
- Education. Timeline, hours, address. Going back to (and including) high school. If it is within the last 3 years, list a person who knew you (name/phone/address).
- Character references. List three people that cover the last seven years ofyour life (name, address, phone). Don't repeat contacts listed in the above three.
- Family. Full name, DOB, address of each immediate family member.
- Travel. List timeline of all foreign countries you've visited in the last 7 years.
- Military Prior Service. Know timeline (dates) and Rank/Grade, AOC/MOS for all past assignments.
This was the biggest time suck for me. You use this information to fill out a DCA, which will be used by your recruiter to start your packet and help with your security clearance. It took me a lot of hours to track down folks to find updated contact info, but I'm also old and moved a lot.
Also, if you have any past physical injuries (from broken bones on up), know the date, the doctor, and the outcome. You might start requesting your medical records, as the recruiter might need them for waivers.
Keep in mind that the process is longer for folks who are prior service (ironically enough) as they need to request boatloads of military records and the turnaround is slow. I first submitted my paperwork in July 2008 and I'm shooting for an ASR start of April 1st, 2009 (touch wood). So even if you're just considering the program, starting on the paperwork is a wise idea.
Don't worry about your run-time. You need to pass a MEPS physical (touch your toes, duck walk, etc.; you've been through it before) but don't do any timed PT until OBLC.
I didn't like the Guard search engine, so I just google'd it and found a few third party site that had info on all the California Guard sites. There are probably sites like these for all states.
Keep in mind, when you are in ASR, you are assigned to your local AMEDD recruiter. When you are in residency, it's recommended you be assigned to a medical battalion, NOT a line unit. The Flexi-time request of your CO (one weekend every 3 mos instead of every month) and scheduling constraints make it more likely that you'll get generosity and understanding from a physician command structure instead of a line unit.
Good luck. Let me know if you have any questions. If you want to start paperwork ASAP, I have a recruiter who can answer basic questions and give you the paperwork to start rolling prior to your doing the state thing, if you'd like. PM me.
I'm not sure about that but I can tell the way it works for me in my state. All of us ASR people will be assigned to a recruiting unit, for me it's joint force headquarters. I am then attached to a unit called Med Det (medical detachment). You drill with your attached unit. Med det seems great, everyone says it's a good unit to be with, the commanding officer is a dentist and everyone in it is in some sort of medical field or school. Post residency I will either be assigned to Med Det or to a regular unit as one of their docs.
The docs in my unit don't deploy as a unit. When they deploy they are picked up individually to take one of the 90 day boots on ground spots. Docs assigned to regular units deploy with their unit and can elect to stay for 90 days or chose to stay for the duration of their unit's deployment.
Thanks for the help guys. I had someone contact me today after a little bit of a wait, and was able to get a checklist of things to do in hopes that I can get boarded ASAP.
I think I found the catch for me though: the security clearance questionnaire. I hope I'm not the only person that did some REALLY stupid/illegal/questionable things when I was younger. Hopefully nothing that shoots this deal down.
PM me if you'd like. My background isn't exactly spotless.
I didn't shoot a gas station attendant on a coke binge or the like, but I did my share of stupid stuff in my younger years. I was absolutely, completely honest and while it slowed me down (needing medical waivers) it hasn't derailed the process whatsoever.
For any indiscretions, the Army is going to look for how big the problem was, how often it was repeated and indications that you won't do it again. If you have multiple incidents of recent drug use continuing until early this year, that's a red flag. Smoking some pot in high school is forgivable.
How long does the process generally take? I'm 90% sure I want to do this. But between the last 10%, waiting on (what are hopefully) acceptances, and deciding if it's a good idea as a (hopefully) MD/PhD student; I could use a little more time.
When should I start the process in order to get in before MS 1 (or even better, in time to do OBC during this summer)?
Also, are recruiters going to want me to have a letter of acceptance in hand before they talk to me?
Can anyone PM with some contact information for a recruiter from the Maryland/D.C./Northern Virginia area?
I realize this is a question best answered by someone in the know in my state guard, but I figured I'd ask anyway to get an idea. Regarding background checks - how would a restraining order against me by my wife be viewed? The order itself is a whole 'nother ridiculous story that would take up pages and pages (bottom line, it's completely bogus but somehow she's manipulated the system to cover up some of her own boo's-boo's, etc., etc.), but having it there currently is making me nervous. Any ideas?
It's varied a lot among different folks. From the time you fill out the paperwork to the time that you get on payroll, you should plan on it being anywhere from six months to a year. The time will depend on the aggressiveness of your recruiter and whether you need waivers for anything.
Are you starting medical school in 2009? That might be a little optimistic. The OBLC dates are April/May, June/July and July/August for 2009 prior to medical school starting. Even if you went full throttle on your paperwork tomorrow, the earliest you could get on the ASR rolls would be 01 July and even that would be assuming everything was best-case scenario.
At the end of the day, the main requirement for the ASR program is that you be a medical student. I doubt you'd be able to get on payroll until you were actually attending medical school.
They'll talk to you. And they'll probably let you start on your paperwork, but I doubt they'd do much with it until you have your acceptance in hand. One of the things they need early in the process are letters from your medical school and medical school faculty, so you really can't do too much with the ASR program until you're a medical student.
Ouch. Does the restraining order read for reasons of violence? I have heard that the one crime absolutely non-waiverable for the military is domestic abuse. I would think a restraining order by a spouse for reasons of violence could be a potential deal-killer.
Check with your recruiter and see what s/he says.
Hi all, M3 here. I have not seen any information listed for students like myself. Am I eligible for the ASR program in any way? It appears that to recieve full benefits of the offer you need to begin as an M1. Can I still get my 3 years of active duty pay begining 4th year and extending into residency? If not, what options do they offer that are even close to this deal for an MS3/4? Thanks in advance.
Nope. The active duty pay is only while you are in medical school.
Also, keep in mind that the time from application to first check can be anywhere from 6 months to a year.
I'm a 4th year in the program. It's still a good deal, even though we only get it for one year.
So even though we will be missing out on 2 years of active duty pay (close to $100K) we will still have an 8 year commitment. It seems like such a difference in the benefits you recieve between starting as a M1 as opposed to an M3/4. Am I understanding this correctly?
Most reserve/NG officers get 8 year MSO's and don't get any active pay, deployments notwithstanding.
This may be true, but I would not want to have the same obligation as an M1, get about $100k less, and be eligible for deployment for 2-3 years as an attending which would not be the case for an M1. I'm not worried about being deployed and I understand that there is a strong chance for that. It just doesn't make sense to to the same work for $100k less. Please let me know if I am missing something here.
You aren't missing anything, but it's not the same work. You are recruiting 2 fewer years.
You could always just go back to first year.
Well from what I have read recruiting is not that hard or time consuming. It is a bargain to get 100k to recruit for 2 years. Nobody would want to miss out on that oppurtunity. However, I will miss out on that if I sign now. I am seriously considering signing, but I would like to know if there is another option to make reimbursement more fair. And nice try, but going back to first year is not an option.
And you would have the chance to get $50k to recruit for 1 year. Also a bargain.
The ASR program pays you while you're in medical school. If you take it early, you'll be on payroll longer. If you take it late, you'll be on payroll less long. You're taking it later than most. So it makes sense that you wouldn't be on payroll as long and would in turn get less money out of it.
The ASR program is new. If you look at any of the other programs the national guard offers (STRAP, etc.), you'll see that all of them are probably STILL not as good as the ASR program for someone going in as an MS IV. It's still full-time salary for a year, which you'll get from no other National Guard program.
At the end of the day, everybody signs up for the 8 year commitment. Going with the ASR program right now, you'd get a year's full-time salary and your payback would start immediately, so if you went into a four year residency, you'd only owe one year drilling time (+ 2 IRR) until you were done with your payback. Any other program, you'd have a much longer obligation.
Good luck with your decision. And if you're going to kick it around a while, I'd suggest contacting a recruiter asap to get the ball rolling. It might take a lot longer than you think and you might find yourself with less than a year's pay.
Thanks for the reply. I will get in contact with a recruiter this week. Getting $100K less than the current and future M1's over the same time commitment does leave a bad taste in my mouth. Hopefully the recruiter will let me know if there are other options to make joining as attractive as it is to the M1's. Thanks again.
Yes you are. Keep in mind that they used to recruit med students without the ASR money and will in the future. Life in the guard isn't so bad and I can speak for myself and say so far I like it. There are lots of other incentives to being in the medical corps of the guard including up to $2500 in CME compensation a year (I just learned I can use this while in school), drill pay, retirement, insurance, you get to shoot full auto weapons, and digital camo. The ASR money is an absolute over the top outrageous deal for medical students. I believe they're using it to re-energize recruiting that used to be very active.
Ask around at your next drill. The deal is that docs and I believe nurses and PA's can get reimbursed for a CME trip up to $2500 each year. The details are complicated but you get a daily per diem to live on and reimbursed for registration, transportation, and hotel. I assumed before that it was only for people who were graduated and actually doctors but I was told a couple weeks ago that I was eligible and just had to figure out where and when i wanted to go and put in a request to get it approved. Now I'm trying to figure out what to do with it or if I just try to get a step 1 course paid for.
I'm not sure this question or 'concern' has been discussed...
I'm hesitant to sign up with this program mainly because it seems to me that you're agreeing to be a full-time employee of the National Guard while you are a medical student.
The concern being that there is nothing that stipulates how many hours a week you might have to devote to your recruiting duties ... it seems to me that you're just trusting that they're going to be 'cool about it' and not demand much out of you since you're a student and they want you to do well.
I'd also posit that if you just do 'okay' rather than 'excellent', that may be of benefit to them as they probably want Family Physicians, not Neurosurgeons.
I guess the simple answer is 'don't sign up' ... just curious if I'm missing something ... is there something in the contract that would protect someone from excessive hours or are we expected to go on faith that they're looking out for our best interests?
These are good questions and I'll try to address all of them. The bottom line that addresses most of your questions is 'they need you a lot more than you need them'. That being said, they have to be accommodating to you or they know that their recruiting and especially their retention of docs will be lousy.
About what your unit will be like in your state I'd go up and talk to people and figure out what the attitudes and atmosphere is like. You can get a feel for what people think of it from talking to a few. And the guard needs more than just family docs. In fact, as far as your non-deployment role as a doc in the guard they don't care what you are. "A doc is doc is a doc" is the line I've heard a few times.
About the hours you spend as a recruiter I'd say at least in my case I have almost total flexibility in how I approach it. I do get the occasional phone call I'm not expecting and have to spend 10-30 minutes answering questions and keep up with people but for what they pay me it's not at all a problem. Talk to the recruiter in your state and find out exactly what it is they're going to expect of you. If it's one of your major concerns, ask the question multiple times of multiple people in different ways until you are comfortable.
Okay, so you get 4 years active duty as a med student. The years as a resident also count as active duty? If so under "current policy" you are basically undeployable throughout the whole process? I don't think I am understanding this correctly.
You can get 3 years of the 'active duty for special work' ADSW while in med school. After that you are in drilling status and only get points for days you get paid. About deployments, unless the situation changes you won't be deployed until you're done with residency. The army would have to be pretty desperate because it would hurt their recruiting and retention if they yanked us around like that.
so how many years after residency are you deployable?
It depends on when you get in and the length of your residency. If you joined as an M2 and had a 4 year residency your military obligation would be complete a year after you finish residency. At that point you could resign your commission and get out. Some will choose to do this but I think many will choose to take the extra incentives and stick around a few more years. Once you did that you'd just be 6 or 8 years from military retirement and might hang around a while longer.
Thanks for the quick reply. So, if I sign up now (starting med school in august, have been accepted), and then did a 4 yr residency my 8 years active duty would be up and I could opt out correct? What does the army get out of this really? I mean recruiting part time and pretending to be GI Joe on the weekends doesn't really seem to benefit them too much... I am looking for a catch...
To attempt to answer your question I'll try to paint the picture of where this ASR deal came from as I understand it. Before the ASR deal where you get paid active duty to recruit in med school the guard used to recruit med students well. They got drill checks, got some free training, uniforms & gear, CME trips, and other small benefits all for an 8 year obligation that for many would be up before they had to deploy. Keep in mind, before President W the guard didn't deploy like it does now. Recruiting and retention of docs began to get pretty bad as I understand it. I believe they have been trying to catch back up and have taken steps to ensure that they recruit and retain us better. They added the 90 days boots on ground policy and I think this ASR deal is a way to quickly jump start recruiting. There isn't a hook built into the deal, they're just wanting you to recruit and to hang around after residency for the incentives and adventure.
Quite frankly my local recruiter/online recruiters have been useless when it comes to this ASR program. They didn't even know what it was until I linked it to them, at which time they gave me the customary "enlistment application" link. So, does anyone know where I could find a list of the ASR's (amedd student recruiters) at major colleges?
Several of us here are ASR's and others are joining now. The only recruiter in your state you need to be dealing with is one who is an AMEDD (army medical dept) recruiter or an AMEDD recruiting technician. The rest of them can't help you and will just try to tell you to enlist. I'm glad to answer questions and will even give out my phone # if you need it. There are also a couple NGB regional recruiters that people on this forum would recommend as outstanding sources of information and who can also get you plugged in to the proper person in your state.
posted in EM forum, but maybe better to post here...how do yall feel about the conditions for getting a job post-residency, (ie when you are now deployable in the ASR program), do think it will hurt your chances for a getting hired, are there enough jobs open it doesn't matter, will it hurt you in more "competitive" markets? thanks!
I realize it's confusing, but there are a few terms about the military you should probably get clear as it makes the whole obligation process a lot simpler.
MSO = Military Serivce Obligation. This is how many years you owe the military in total. For military officers who first sign up, it is always 8 years.
Active Duty = Full-time Army. National Guardsmen are only Active Duty when they are called up and deployed (like for 90 days in Iraq) or for a program like ASR, when you are what is called ADSW.
ADSW = Active Duty Special Work. You are not deployed, but are pulling a full time officer salary for the National Guard. Usually, it is for a more traditional job when the National Guard needs a full-time employee for a while. For the ASR program, you are ADSW, but your assignment is to attend medical school and spread the word.
Drilling Status = the traditional one weekend per month, two weeks per year that folks in the National Guard do to fulfill their commitment.
Flexi-Training = during residency, you have the option of doing flexi-training, which is one weekend every three months rather than the traditional one weekend every month. This is up to the discretion of your CO.
IRR = Individual Ready Reserve. This is when you are no longer drilling or have any association with the military other than to let them know where you live. You do not work, you do not drill. But in times of national emergencies, you can be activated by the Army. The only times folks have been activated from IRR since Vietnam was the Gulf War (in which only a small number were activated) and the current wars (in which a hell of a lot have been activated). To my knowledge, I don't believe any physicians have been pulled in off of IRR in either conflict.
Once those terms are clear, here's how to apply them to the ASR program.
When you start the ASR program, you have the typical 8 year MSO. Of that 8 year MSO, you are only obligated to drilling status for 6 years. You can spend the other 2 years of your MSO in IRR. Of the 6 years of drilling status, up to three of them can be spent on ADSW while in medical school, pulling a full-time officer's salary while you attend school and try to get folks interested in the program.
So to answer your question, you would probably start ASR in your second year of medical school and take the ADSW money for three years. By doing so, you've paid back 3 of the 6 years of drilling status. If you did a three year residency (the shortest residency), you would be in drilling status. You would have the option of doing Flexi-training for this time and drilling less often than once per month. For Flexi-Training, since it is up to the CO's approval, I'd recommend looking into the unit you'd be assigned to and getting authorization. I have heard that Medical Battalions are usually good about it (because they are made up of many doctors) whereas it's hit and miss with line units.
Once you finish residency, you could switch to IRR and functionally be done with the National Guard, unless you are called up from IRR. Again, I don't know of any doctors who this has happened to (the call ups from IRR have all been combat troops and translators, from what I have heard), but an important point is that if you are called up from IRR, you are not called into the National Guard but would be called into regular active duty Army. If that worries you, you should plan on spending those additional two years in drilling status instead. Then, when you are done, you simply resign your commission and are done with it.
Crap. Yes, and that's the part that bugs me to no end - allegations of domestic abuse that are completely false ! You know those movies where the main character is trying to be a good guy but is absolutely getting screwed over and nobody other than the audience sees it? That's me lately and I need an audience. Wow, this suddenly sucks.
Talk to a recruiter and a lawyer.
Yeah, we talked about that in OBLC...domestic violence = deal breaker...sucks.
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