AF M4

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Hi everyone, I was hoping to gather a collection of experiences from flight surgeons about their typical lives. How much clinic you have a week, how many patients you see, how much administration you have to do, how much time you have off for family or for other things like research or generally having a good time...Thanks!
 

Milrad

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AF M4 said:
Hi everyone, I was hoping to gather a collection of experiences from flight surgeons about their typical lives. How much clinic you have a week, how many patients you see, how much administration you have to do, how much time you have off for family or for other things like research or generally having a good time...Thanks!
Depends on where you go and if you are assigned to the hospital or flying squadron.

I was in Alaska assigned to a fighter squadron. Clinic 2-3 days a week, 1 day as the walk in guy, 1 day to fly. (We were overmanned). Remember out of Conus gets manning first, so overseas is usually better manned. Go for over seas if you want to have more fun.

Fighter pilots complain less and come in less, so being a fighter flight surgeon is better in that aspect. Cargo and refuelers can deploy alot, sometimes more than fighters.

Space command sucks, you don't get to fly as much and your "fliers" have less incentive to suck it up and go to work, so they come in and see you to get out of work. DON'T DO SPACE COMMAND.

This is of course just my opinion.
 

medivac

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Due to your name, I am taking that you are air force? In the Navy, we spend 50% in the clinic, doing sickcall, flight physical, and occasionally general clinic scut work. The other 50% is with your squadron, either flying, maintaining records, getting ready for deployment, and essentially checking up on everyone's health and well being. While deployed, this continues, with working on the ship's sickcall and trying to wedge yourself onto a flight.
 

8744

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All right. This is going to be a stupid question and I apologize in advance.

Why is it important for the flight surgeon to actually fly?

As I understand it, the flight surgeon is sort of the infantry equivalnet of the battalion surgeon.
 

kingcer0x

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I'm a newbie, but from last summer's FS Recruitment Pep Rally (AKA the HPSP Intro to Aerospace Med ADT), they told us the FS needs to fly because:

1) rapidly deploy with squadron. A senior FS mentioned this happened to her in the current conflict while deploying with joint ops, covered up the windows and everything so they didnt know where they were going
2) learn enough about airplanes + flying to perform duties unique to FS, like flight physicals, environmental concerns, etc.
3) better understanding of demands placed on pilots and their families
4) easier to lure people into FS billets with the promise of "flying", even if it is 4 hours a month in the back of a C-130. Well, I made this last one up... but the point remains

keep 'em flying, hooah
 

militarymd

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Panda Bear said:
All right. This is going to be a stupid question and I apologize in advance.

Why is it important for the flight surgeon to actually fly?

As I understand it, the flight surgeon is sort of the infantry equivalnet of the battalion surgeon.
There's no good reason.
 

orbitsurgMD

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AF M4 said:
Hi everyone, I was hoping to gather a collection of experiences from flight surgeons about their typical lives. How much clinic you have a week, how many patients you see, how much administration you have to do, how much time you have off for family or for other things like research or generally having a good time...Thanks!

He fills out residency applications, if he is smart.
 

orbitsurgMD

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orbitsurgMD said:
He fills out residency applications, if he is smart.

In the Navy, the 50/50 local clinic and squadron model usually applies to billets attached to aviation commands. That can be good, because you go with the command when you deploy. If you are in a claimancy billet (i.e., not assigned to a squadron), you are owned by the clinic and are basically a GMO with wings, except you do all the flight physicals and waiver applications, and you may have to stand watch schedules for the clinic and for flight operations independently. You also don't have a command of your own to go to to get your required flight hours in. My advice is to avoid claimancy billets, and if you can't, then avoid those that aren't on an air station by the flight line. If you have to do the latter, try to get a letter of understanding between the hospital command that oversees the clinic and the local aviation operational command or wing to guarantee you a minimum amount of scheduled time for flying outside of the clinic every month. I suggest two days, minimum. Time spent in clinic doing flight medicine paperwork or flight physicals should not be part of your flying time.
 

8744

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OK. Another dumb question which is going to sound even "dumberer" because of my military background:

Do flight surgeons get any flight instruction and operate the controls or are they just passengers? Also, if you were assigned to a strike squadron, say of single-seat Hornets or Harriers, how would you get any flight time if you weren't flying?
 

orbitsurgMD

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Panda Bear said:
OK. Another dumb question which is going to sound even "dumberer" because of my military background:

Do flight surgeons get any flight instruction and operate the controls or are they just passengers? Also, if you were assigned to a strike squadron, say of single-seat Hornets or Harriers, how would you get any flight time if you weren't flying?
Unless you are dual-qualified as a pilot in the type flown by the squadron, (few flight surgeons are) your only option is to get flight time in a platform that has an extra seat. Anything counts, even sitting aboard the SAR helo for their training ops is OK. All you need is for someone to sign your logbook.
 

Heeed!

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Panda Bear said:
OK. Another dumb question which is going to sound even "dumberer" because of my military background:

Do flight surgeons get any flight instruction and operate the controls or are they just passengers? Also, if you were assigned to a strike squadron, say of single-seat Hornets or Harriers, how would you get any flight time if you weren't flying?
My flight doc was a fully-qualified WSO in the Strike Eagle. He sucked in the back seat (sts :laugh: ) but was qualified to go to war in the jet, if we needed him. I saw "Juggler" on last year's match list for that whole SAM/MPH thing.
 

Heeed!

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Panda Bear said:
OK. Another dumb question which is going to sound even "dumberer" because of my military background:

Do flight surgeons get any flight instruction and operate the controls or are they just passengers? Also, if you were assigned to a strike squadron, say of single-seat Hornets or Harriers, how would you get any flight time if you weren't flying?
My flight doc was a fully-qualified WSO in the Strike Eagle. He sucked in the back seat (sts :laugh: ) but was qualified to go to war in the jet, if we needed him. I saw "Juggler" on last year's match list for that whole SAM/MPH thing.
 

ExNavyRad

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Panda Bear said:
OK. Another dumb question which is going to sound even "dumberer" because of my military background:

Do flight surgeons get any flight instruction and operate the controls or are they just passengers? Also, if you were assigned to a strike squadron, say of single-seat Hornets or Harriers, how would you get any flight time if you weren't flying?
When I went through NAMI, (now NOMI, I believe) our FS class was split in half when we went to Whiting Field for the six weeks of flight training. Half went to T-34's , and half went to TH-57 helos. IIRC, two guys out of my class got enought flight time and hit enough gates that they were allowed to solo in the T-34. Nobody was allowed to solo in the TH-57, even one guy who had alot of private fixed-wing hours. I was able to hold a TH-57 in a very rough 5-10 foot hover inside a 30-foot radius circle after about 8-10 hours of instruction. Very sloppy, actually, by naval aviator standards, but I considered it a small accomplishment.

Looking at my old logbook, I managed to accumulate about 50 hours in the A-6 in the B/N's seat, and about 18 hours in the KC-130's over 18 months. (Kinda low, but I wasn't a flight time ***** like some flight surgeons I worked with.) Oh, and 4.7 hours in an Australian P-3 :thumbup: I did "fly" an A-6 once from the B/N's seat; the pilot let me lean over and use the stick while he manipulated the throttles. We were in loose formation with a MAG-12 A-4 over Japan at the time...

Man, that was a long time ago. I'm sure much had changed since.:(

Anyway, the idea of flight time as a flight surgeon is not to turn you into Tom Cruise, but to give you a first-hand appreciation of the unique environment in which your primary patients (and colleagues if you are "squadron doc") do their jobs.