Military

  1. RN joining military as combat medic?

    currently an RN with 2 years or ER experience at a level 2 trauma facility as well as a general pediatric floor nurse. 26 y/o a husband and a father who has always had a passion for the military and serving my country, I am tired of hospital work and wanting to work in the field in combat so that others may live. Is entering the guard or reserves as a combat medic a smart choice? What opportunities are out there that would allow me to enter as a nurse but in combat. Thanks!!
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  2. 13 Comments

  3. by   quiltynurse56
    Why not join as a nurse? Higher rank and higher pay. Units deploy as units. If your unit is deployed you will be in combat place. Best thing to do is to ask a recruiter.
  4. by   DJello
    It's a good point but from what I have researched nurses are nurses and they don't utilize them in combat as they wouldn't put officers in those situations of combat. But true a recruiter would hopefully help out.
  5. by   sallyrnrrt
    Oh yes they do in a way, and if Aran, usually enlisted officer.....

    Do you not remember the TV show Mash?
  6. by   Euro_Sepsis
    No such thing as an enlisted officer... anyway....

    If your passion is to get your slay on and do some high speed medic stuff under fire, and only do it part-time, then there are PJ units in the Air Force Reserve that you can join. You can enlist and serve as a PJ or commission and serve as a CRO. But you'll be active duty for a while (like over a year) to complete your training. Assuming you can hack the fitness requirements to be a candidate, or even clear MEPS.

    If you have a BSN and choose to commission, the Air Force has flight nursing and critical care transport jobs (as well as TCCET) in the Reserve, minimally so in the Navy, and the Army has some interesting mixed-role RN things like point-of-injury medevac and joint forward surgical teams.

    As a nurse, with your stated goals, you'll probably find more fulfillment with the Air Force because they are responsible for the majority of patient movement for the military. A BSN is a must at the moment (except for the National Guard, I believe), and if you choose to use your nursing experience toward getting a high-speed/low-drag nursing job like CCATT, TCCET, or some secret-squirrel JSOC forward team, you better get a job in a level 1 ED or SICU before picking up the phone and calling a recruiter.
  7. by   Silverdragon102
    Moved to the Government and Military forum
  8. by   nurse2033
    I am not aware of any combat nursing jobs. I'm assuming you want to snoop around in the boondocks. You should get over this. Professionally it would be a step down to become a medic, although you would be overqualified and probably awesome at it. PJ would be one of the highest levels of performance and the one I would least recommend. You are talking at least a year or more of schools, basic, jump school, dive school ect. Although that stuff would be awesome it would wreak heck on your family life. Even to become an army medic would enter basic, school, and a lot of training. Infinitely better to commission as an officer and nurse as Guard or Reserve. This would give your family stability and you the opportunity to deploy. Feel free to PM me with questions. I'm a Guard flight nurse.
  9. by   jfratian
    The Air Force does have the special operations surgical team (SOST). You are embedded with a AFSOC unit full time. Once you complete their training pipeline, you actually work most of the time at civilian level 1 trauma centers through a military/civilian partnership program with the other people in your team.

    I would caution that their PT test involves a significant amount of swimming and that gets a lot of people.

    Their call for candidates specifies a 46N3E (ICU nurse), but I have heard they also take 46N3J (ER). To my knowledge, the roles are only for active duty. You generally have to be an ICU or ER nurse with a 2 years of time on station and submit an application to be invited to tryout. You would then go to training enroute to your 2nd assignment. The PCS locations are Cannon, NM, Hurlburt, FL, Birmingham, AL, and Miami, FL.
  10. by   DJello
    Thank for the truth nurse2033! Just got contacted for an opportunity in the air national guard as a CERFP. I had considered the Air Force flight nurse but don't like ICU nursing but instead enjoy emergency care!
    Last edit by DJello on Oct 1 : Reason: Use of wrong word
  11. by   KatheyRN
    If you already have your RN. Air Force Flight Nurse is the way to go.
  12. by   RayRN87
    just some input, my cousin went in as a enilsted - combat medic and he hated it. He was an RN (PACU nurse) and he didn't get the specialist rank because he didn't take an EMT course so if you do this route make sure you have EMT background for a step-up.

    Also from his experience I went ahead and did a direct commision as a 66S (ICU nurse), I came in as an 02 - First LT and so far have enjoyed going between civilian hospital and drilling with my unit. Either option is great, military will support you with your future endeavors in exchange for your time - it is a sacrifice but the presitige and honor of serving our country is priceless
    Last edit by RayRN87 on Oct 2 : Reason: typo
  13. by   jfratian
    Just so he's aware, there are three different transport teams that the Air Force uses. Flight nurses take the stable med-surg patients on fixed wing aircraft. CCATT nurses take the ICU patients; join as an ICU nurse instead of a flight nurse. TCCET nurses (ICU or ER) do point of injury stabilization and rotary wing/short-distance transport; join as an ER or ICU nurse instead.
  14. by   DJello
    Great info everyone! thanks! so jfratian it seems like there is no guarantee where you would be placed within flight nursing.

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