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Discussion in 'Military Dentistry' started by BQuad, Aug 20, 2007.

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  1. BQuad

    BQuad

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    Similar to Deep Impact's Navy thread.

    If you have a question about Army Dentistry, drop a line and I'll try to answer to the best of my ability from my experience.

    My tours so far:

    Loma Linda - 4yr HPSP
    Ft. Lewis- 1yr AEGD
    Camp Casey, Korea- 1yr
    Ft. Richardson, AK - 1yr
    Camp Bucca, Iraq - Been here 8 months
  2. Deep Impact

    Deep Impact Moderator Emeritus

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    How long is your typical deployment?
  3. BQuad

    BQuad

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    For general dentists, regardless if they went through the 1 or 2 yr AEGD, tours were 12 months, but now are generally 15. There are a handful that get a half tour.

    For Specialists, they were 6 months, but now I think are 7 1/2.

    The Army has no system for fairly deciding who gets the short tours. For example, I did an unaccompanied (just you not your wife or kids) tour in Korea for a year, was back for a year, then deployed for what now may be 15 months (we haven't gotten an official extension yet). At the same time, 2 dentists came to the same base I'm at on 6 months tours and neither has done any hardship tour.
  4. utahdent123

    utahdent123 Senior Member

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    Quick question...where can I get a copy of the 678-R reimbursement form? The Army handbook says to go www.mods.army.mil/medicaleducation and it will be under the general information tab. Unfortanately, I was unable to locate it there. Thanks in advance for your help.
  5. FTS

    FTS New Member

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    The forms are under the 'HPSP Forms' selection of the General Information tab.
  6. iLuvDAT

    iLuvDAT

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    if we withdraw from iraq sometime in the future, where would army dentists get deployed overseas?
  7. BQuad

    BQuad

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    Well, it all depends, could be Iran for all we know. There will still be spots for dentists in Iraq for years to come, though hopefully not as many. We will probably never fully withdraw from Iraq.

    There are other overseas hardship assignments, there's one in Sinai, Egypt and then some in Korea. Then there have been lots of little deployments over the years, Grenada, Haiti, Honduras, but they have been short. Where ever the Army goes they'll take a dentist too.
  8. ArmyPilot

    ArmyPilot

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  9. ajaxkid

    ajaxkid

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    Have any of you ever heard of an Army aviation officer branch transfering into the dental corps before their ADSO (active duty service obligation) is up? Thats what I'm trying to do and I just wanted to see if there was any precedent out there.
  10. BQuad

    BQuad

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    I don't know if anyone who transferred in from another branch, but that doesn't mean it can't happen, the Dental Corp needs officers and would be ecstatic to get someone with prior officer experience.

    I would go to the HRC website and find your way into the dental newsletter, their should be an email for someone you can talk to about switching branches and scholarship opportunities. (Sorry civilians, this is a password locked military site.)
  11. blankguy

    blankguy

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    BQuad,
    I've been told that the Army HPSP is the easiest to get into, but I want to see some rough numbers as to how many apply and how many get the scholarship.
    Also I recently went to a Army dental presentation, the recruiter keeps saying that not everybody gets to be deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan I am wondering don't you have to get deployed in order to get ahead in the Army?
  12. BQuad

    BQuad

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    Yes you wil have deploy to get ahead in the Army and if you stay long enough you will most likely get deployed at some point. If you are applying to a residency with equally qualified applicatants and you are the only one who hasn't deployed, your not getting it.

    Almost anyone who can get into dental school and doesn't have a criminal record can get an Army scholarship. In June of this year I heard they had only given away 16 out of 120 scholarships for this fall. This is because people aren't applying, not because the Army is too picky.
  13. fireblast713

    fireblast713

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    What's the average starting salary for a Army GD straight out of dental school?
  14. blankguy

    blankguy

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    You mean they already started this fiscal year? I thought it started on October 1st?:confused:

    Anyways thanks for the info. I had this suspicion that the recruiter saying "not everybody deploys" was just advertising BS.
  15. Flakbait9

    Flakbait9

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    Hey BQuad, a few more questions:

    How many patients do you see each day? Both on deployment, and back on base at home?

    Do you feel like you get to do a good range of procedures?

    Overall do you feel that your clinical skills have benefitted?

    Thanks!
  16. blankguy

    blankguy

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    I am wondering what type of questions they ask for the interview.
  17. BQuad

    BQuad

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    In general the Army is a slow paced practice generally booked 1 patient per hour 1 chair per dentist. If you need longer for a crown or root canal you just let the front desk know. There are some expanded function dental assistants that will place the fillings, then you would work out of 2 chairs and see two patients an hour.

    Here I see 10 to 20 patients a day, I'm at a prison so it is almost all extractions. I see fewer patients when I'm up at the troop clinic, we rotate through there once a month or so. As a result my OS skills are better but everything else has suffered this year. This post isn't typical of most deployments where you are treating soldiers all the time and get to do a wider range of procedures.
  18. jmick101

    jmick101 Kung Fu DDS

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    I asked my recruiter about this and in the western region alone they have given away 65. I would also say that if you dont have a record AND dont have any significant health problems you will get one. If you have asthma or a heart murmur, forget it.
  19. blankguy

    blankguy

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    65 this past fiscal year? The new fiscal year stars on Oct 1st. I think it is pretty obvious that the army is taking a recruitment hit due to Iraq and Afghanistan.
  20. BQuad

    BQuad

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    I was told 16 by my father, a retired Army Dental Corps Officer, after he saw many high ranking members of the Dental Corps at the San Diego Academy of General Dentistry Meeting.

    I didn't see it in writing so can't argue. Either way the Army is hurting for dentists.
  21. blankguy

    blankguy

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    It seems that you can't really pinpoint the exactly the numbers so I'm not going to even bother pressing you on this any further BQuad. What has the Army done to try to get more people to sign up for the dental corp in the last few years?? Have they tried to sweeten the HPSP?
  22. BQuad

    BQuad

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    As far as I know very little. I heard there may have been a stipend increase, but I don't know what it was. When I was in school I was getting about $1300 a month take home pay. Financially the HPSP isn't a bad deal if you are planning on attending a private university, but there is a lot to consider besides the finances.
  23. Sch81

    Sch81

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    BQuad,

    It sounds like a lot of Army dentists either say they have great freedom in their training and practice or just their military lives in general, while others suggest it is constraining and that you are at the mercy of someone else in nearly everything you do. I realize there is probably a huge gray area here, but in your opinion what is the level of autonomy you can maintain practicing in the Army? Or anything else related to this issue you could comment on?

    I don't know if BQuad is the only guy who answers on this thing, but if not what do you all think about it?
  24. hattrack04

    hattrack04

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    I also have a question for you BQuad. I've read a lot about the army HPSP, plenty of good and bad. But I am curious about the Air Force. I hear it's better, but I can't seem to find many specific details about why it's better besides shorter deployment (if that's even true). I know you may not know much more since you're Army, but I was just wondering if you would recommend the Air Force HPSP based on what you do know??
  25. blankguy

    blankguy

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    I feel that the "constraints" and the fact you don't have as much autonomy will be quite helpful for somebody who is fresh out of dental school. His/her skills will be raw so the main focus ideally should be on improving their skills for the first few years.
  26. spc213

    spc213 SDN Donor

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    BQuad,
    Thanks for the forum.
    Just curious, are you on a 3 or 4 year tour at Fort Rich with a 15-month deployment to Iraq? Or did you do a 1-year tour to AK? Just looking for clarification.
    Thanks.
    spc213
  27. pmoney

    pmoney Senior Member

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    I know you haven't been stateside in a big post in a while, but is it true that if you are sitting in Fort Bragg/Drum/Hood/etc you get screwed because of the 15 month deployments?

    To clarify, I've been reading about how since everyone needs an exam every 12 months, the guys who are coming back are all classed as unknown and thus you end up doing exams all day long when a unit returns from overseas?

    What if there are a lot of specialists at your location, do they snag every case in their area of expertise or do you get some experience with stuff other than extractions and fillings?
  28. BQuad

    BQuad

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    Sorry everyone, my roommate was traveling for a while and took his laptop with, so I didn't have access to the internet and Government computers won't let you into forums. I'll try to answer everything that was asked.

    As far as the autonomy goes it varies a lot from post to post. Except for over here, I have had a good range of practice and I could do pretty much anything I wanted. I have heard horror stories from larger posts that have lots of specialists where general dentists have been stuck with exams, sick call and restorative and not much else, but I haven't encountered it personally. Pros is always hard because the military dental lab has a long turnaround time and unless you have a lab on post, which is getting rare, you have to send the case to Georgia to get a crown made. Implants are also rare in the Army and extremely difficult to get done and they won't even let a general dentist restore them. How much the specialists snag cases depends how busy they are. If they are packed then you will have more opportunities, but if the prosthodontist is twidling his thumbs, then he's going to start snagging single crowns. Again it varies a lot by post and deployment cycles.

    I'll try to write some more later. Gotta head back to work.
  29. BQuad

    BQuad

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    Alaska is a 3 year tour,same with Germany, Hawaii, Japan, deployments count as part of that. If you don't have enough time on your contract left they will extend you to complete the tour.

    Usually they will block off days for redeployment exams, my guess is that captains and general dentists that have done the 2 year program are doing the bulk of the exams, not the specialists. There are a lot of exams to do and it's not a quick process to do thousands of exams, so I'm sure it takes up time from your usual schedule.

    Air Force is the way to go in my opinion. The deployment system is fairer, the bases tend to be nicer and some in better spots. The dentists I've talked to in the Air Force seem to be happier. My friend stayed in the Army to do ortho residency, which is a joint Air Force program and he is considering switching to the Air Force once his commitment for the residency is done so he must here good things from the Air Force guys. I can't tell you much first hand, but they do have shorter tours and they are spread around much better than the Army.

    Hope that helps.
  30. TX_NFS

    TX_NFS Steel melanoleuca

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    You may have hinted at this in a previous post (with your father being an Army Dentist as well), but why Army?

    Additionally, do you (or are you allowed to) moonlight and see cases outside of your post? I'm pre-med so I apologize if that question shows my ignorance.
  31. BQuad

    BQuad

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    Do you mean why did I choose the Army?

    Moonlighting is generally available if you want to work more than 40 hours a week or use vacation time to work, which I don't. It has to be approved by the commander, generally not a problem, but may be a hassle depending on state licensing requirement where you get stationed.
  32. TX_NFS

    TX_NFS Steel melanoleuca

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    Yes, I did. Sorry for being vague.
  33. BQuad

    BQuad

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    I choose the Army because the Army had given me a good life growing up, and we hadn't invaded Iraq yet. Even back then my dad suggested the Air Force except they didn't have 4 year scholarships. My father made it sound like taking out loans was a really bad move, but it doesn't compare to the misery I've endured during my payback.

    If I had known I was going to have to spend more than 2 out of 3 years away from my wife I never would have done it, but I hadn't even met my wife when I signed the contract. Do not take this decision lightly, it will affect the rest of your life.
  34. Flakbait9

    Flakbait9

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    Hey BQuad, I’m just curious: how did you get stuck doing TWO tours away from your family? I guess one isn’t a huge surprise in the present climate, but I would have thought you could have avoided a second one. Is this typical for all Army dentists?

    Are you less likely to be deployed away from your family if you’re already stationed (with family) overseas?
  35. BQuad

    BQuad

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    Hardship tours in Korea don't count as a deployment so you're not free and clear. Army says you have to have at least 6 months before you are deployed after coming back from Korea. I wouldn't say it's common, but it sure sucks. It's unlikely that a dentist would get sent to Iraq twice, unless you are the dentist for a special forces unit, then maybe two or three shorter tours all depends on the mission they have.

    Now, it doesn't matter if you are overseas with your family, they have started sending dentists from Germany to Iraq. Only thing I can imagine worse than leaving your family at home is leaving them in foriegn country or having to move them back stateside again while you're gone.
  36. blankguy

    blankguy

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    If Iraq and Afghanistan does wind down a bit. Not necessarily a full pull out how will that change the deployments within the dental corp.
  37. BQuad

    BQuad

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    It all depends on the number of troops on the ground. There is generally 1 dentist for every 1000-1500 soldiers. Less troops, less deployments.

    The current administrations goal seems to be for Iraq to become like South Korea and we will be here indefinitely.
  38. blankguy

    blankguy

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    I asked the recruiter this and he made it sound like it was going to be a minor deployment a la Kosovo, Albania and/or Bosnia. Some of them are through NATO.
    I personally I'm inclined to believe what you say since the task of rebuilding two countries politically is more extensive in Iraq and Afghanistan than those regions.
  39. BQuad

    BQuad

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    There are some minor deployments in those areas, often from dental units in Germany, but they are usually safer and shorter, 6 months last I heard. But Iraq and Afghanistan are the big 2, and if a recruiter is telling you you won't go as a dentist, he's lying.
  40. DentalDreamer

    DentalDreamer

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    Is it possible for an Army Dentist to complete Ranger School and Airborne Training, while serving back the 3-4 years from the HPSP scholarship, and if so, does it count towards the commitment or not?In other words, what kind of army training does a Dental Officer receive in the Army Dental Corps, apart from the basic training?
  41. jmill0

    jmill0 Licensed to Drill

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    Is it possible... yes. Is it likely.... no. The Army will not waste slots for these schools on dentists wanting to have fun. A dentist does not go out with the Rangers and it is highly unlikely that you'd be jumping out of any planes. That being said, if you were assigned to an Airborne division, then maybe you could do Airborne training. If you're asigned to a DENTAC, there is virtually no way they'll let you do that, especially if you're destined to leave after a few years.....

    JMHO

    Jason
  42. DentalDreamer

    DentalDreamer

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  43. BQuad

    BQuad

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    I second that, unless you are assigned to an Airborne Unit it would be hard to get your Airborne tab. But if you really want to go to a field unit, you can probably request to go to an Airborne unit and then you will definitely get the chance to go, Airborne units give guys who aren't paratroopers yet a hard time (jokingly of course). Also if you ask to go to a Special Forces unit you will get more opportunities to do Army training.

    Ranger school is pretty much out, everyone can ask to go to the Combat Casualty Care Course which is pretty low key as far as training goes, you also might get a chance to go to Air Assault school.
  44. jmick101

    jmick101 Kung Fu DDS

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    If you are assigned (volunteer and make your own arrangements) to an SF unit then you will be on jump status and can swing a slot to Ranger school. I emailed this guy who is assigned to the SF group in Ft. Bragg and he is putting together his packet for Ranger school this winter. Personally speaking, I went to Ranger school with doctors, transportation officers, medics, guys from foreign countries, guys from the Navy and Air Force, you name it. If the funding is there, and a unit has the slot, then you can go. Forget about going to Ranger school from a regular clinic, they have no slots (why should they?) and no funding for them. PM me if you want more information on this stuff.
  45. hardfeeling

    hardfeeling

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    Hi every body,
    I am a dentist graduated from a foreign country,a permanet resident of US want to join AF, Navy, or Army.
    I passed NBDE part 1 and 2 and TOEFL but do not have a dental license in the US.
    As you know,To be eligible to get a dental license, we must go a university for two years in the US.


    :scared:My question is that if there is any program for us to work in the army. for example, applying for specialty in Prosthodontics in the army and then working for the army after graduation.
    Please help me how to get a dental license through programs in U.S.Army for a foreign dentist.
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
  46. hardfeeling

    hardfeeling

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    Hi D.D.S Navy,
    I am a dentist graduated from a foreign country,a permanet resident of US want to join AF, Navy, or Army.
    I passed NBDE part 1 and 2 and TOEFL but do not have a dental license in the US.
    As you know,To be eligible to get a dental license, we must go a university for two years in the US.


    :scared:My question is that if there is any program for us to work in the army. for example, applying for specialty in Prosthodontics in the army and then working for the army after graduation.
    Please help me how to get a dental license through programs in U.S.Army for a foreign dentist.
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
  47. BQuad

    BQuad

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    Do a search for "citizen" and you'll find a couple threads that discuss foriegn dentists.

    I'm not sure if the HPSP would pay for the International Dentistry Program, but Pros residencies are available and not that competitive in the Army. Another issue is citizenship, usually US Army officers are required to be citizens, but there may be a waiver as long as your background check is approved. I do not know if non-citizens are eligible for an HPSP though.
  48. hardfeeling

    hardfeeling

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    Thank you for responding me, I really appreciate it.
    Have one more question, how I can find a right person, for example some dentists who teach in Army, for asking these questions because I asked many recruitors about that. However, they had no idea about my situation.

    Again thank you.:)
  49. GoDucks69

    GoDucks69 some dude

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    BQuad, I had a question for you regarding reimbursement. I have been in school for months now and I neglected to get any reimbursement for any of my books or anything else. In the HPSP handbook I read that you have to ask for the reimbursement within 60 days. Do you know if they strictly adhere to that or not? Any information on getting this stuff paid for would be really helpful. Thanks.
  50. BQuad

    BQuad

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    I think they do follow that rule, but there should be a number in the HPSP handbook for an academic adviser who should be able to help.

    I know a couple times I let some stuff slip. I know the paper work for that stuff takes a little bit of work to get together, but you just have to make sure you sit down and do it. It's an easy thing to push to the side when you have so much else going on.

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