TheSearch

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Feb 8, 2010
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I have contacted several Army recruiters over the past month, and I have received conflicting information about the availability of the FAP. I will be starting a combined AP/CP Pathology residency this summer, and I think that the FAP is a great opportunity.
The first Army recruiter told me that I do not qualify because pathology is not one of the specialties in “critical need” within the Army. He said that the list of qualifying specialties comes from the Surgeon General and frequently changes. Thus, he advised me to check back with him periodically.
A second Army recruiter then contacted me and told me to begin the application process by filling out the paperwork. I relayed the information from the first recruiter to him, but he simply urged me to continue the paperwork. He noted that, in his experience, nobody who applies is rejected. I would greatly appreciate some feedback and guidance with the following concerns:
1) Does anyone have an inside perspective on how the selection works? Does the Army try to recruit the “critical need” specialties first but then allow residents from other specialties a chance if funding is still available at the end of the fiscal year?
2) Do the Air Force and Navy have significantly different specialty needs? (I’m going to contact them myself about their FAP but I’m just wanting to know if it’s in vain.)
3) Bottom line, is there still any chance that I can get the FAP as a pathology resident, and how do I go about it?
 

NavyFP

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May 18, 2006
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I have contacted several Army recruiters over the past month, and I have received conflicting information about the availability of the FAP. I will be starting a combined AP/CP Pathology residency this summer, and I think that the FAP is a great opportunity.
The first Army recruiter told me that I do not qualify because pathology is not one of the specialties in “critical need” within the Army. He said that the list of qualifying specialties comes from the Surgeon General and frequently changes. Thus, he advised me to check back with him periodically.
A second Army recruiter then contacted me and told me to begin the application process by filling out the paperwork. I relayed the information from the first recruiter to him, but he simply urged me to continue the paperwork. He noted that, in his experience, nobody who applies is rejected. I would greatly appreciate some feedback and guidance with the following concerns:
1) Does anyone have an inside perspective on how the selection works? Does the Army try to recruit the “critical need” specialties first but then allow residents from other specialties a chance if funding is still available at the end of the fiscal year?
2) Do the Air Force and Navy have significantly different specialty needs? (I’m going to contact them myself about their FAP but I’m just wanting to know if it’s in vain.)
3) Bottom line, is there still any chance that I can get the FAP as a pathology resident, and how do I go about it?
Can't speak for the Army specifically, but Navy is not offering FAP for Path. There was a significant slash in funding and it cut goals to the bone. My suspicion is that as a Path resident, they might offer you a spot if they have a leftover in Sep.
 

BOHICA-FIGMO

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Can't speak for the Army specifically, but Navy is not offering FAP for Path. There was a significant slash in funding and it cut goals to the bone. My suspicion is that as a Path resident, they might offer you a spot if they have a leftover in Sep.
So, first they cut HPSP goals. Now they cut FAP goals. Maybe the powers that be think we can train competent docs through NKO :smack:
 

BOHICA-FIGMO

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It all comes from the same pot of money.
Hmm. Did they shift $$ from FAP to HPSP or HSCP or did the budget axe cut a wide swath through all medical officer ascession programs? If so, I'd love to hear the plan for how we are going to recruit the next generation of military (specifically Navy) physicians. I sure hope it is more than: "The economy sucks and people hate ObamaCare, so recruiting more physicians/med students with less money should be easy cheesy..."
 

Dakota

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Is there some place critical needs specialties are listed for each branch?
 

messenger634

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I'm likely to enter IM or FM for residency in 2014. Is there a need or selectivity difference between the divisions? For example, the Airforce is in desperate need of IM's.

Also, I'm in a combined program where I'm getting a masters degree at a very prestigous school for international affairs and security studies. Dozens of military fellows as classmates (one of the reasons I'm considering this). Would that help my application?
 
Jan 16, 2014
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Is there any website where it shows which specialties are needed in which branch?
 

StevenRF

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Mar 24, 2005
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FAP grad here, Air Force.
OP's questions
1.Yes
2.Yes
3.Probably not, or at least the year I got in they had 0 allocated.

Each branch has a separate listing of what specialties and how many slots for each are available. It changes year to year, and slots can get reassigned if one specialty doesn't fill. Only way to access the list is to talk to a healthcare recruiter. Give your local a call and ask about availability. BTW, you cant actually submit your application until match day, so the secret is to get everything done before that, then fax over your match on match day, as its a rolling selection process for the FY.

BTW, some specialties they just don't usually take, path, PMR, couple others. That being said, you can usually join anyway post residency.
 

Red Lobster Actual

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Nov 6, 2014
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I don't know what's going on in the Army, but I sat in a brief at BUMED last month, and the goal for Navy HPSP has remained constant based on the slides they showed (250/year, I believe). Last year they had 3 applicants for every available slot, and the average Step 1 score of successful applicants has increased steadily over the last six years.

For us, there is almost no FAP availability for anyone because they don't need them (I think RAM was the one exception). Our numbers from USUHS and HPSP are so good, there is no reason to offer FAP. Perhaps that's what's going on with the Army as well?
So the Navy graduates about 300 new doctors every year? 50 from USUHS and 250 from HPSP. That seems so little...