Usphs? - page 3

I've seen USPHS mentioned in several posts and have checked out their website. It sounds like it could be a good opportunity. Do any of you have any information on USPHS? Do any of you have... Read More

  1. by   just_cause
    Please correct me if I am wrong - I think this branch follows the same rules as the other 6 branches of the military. You can serve if you are gay but will under the don't ask / tell - ie living as the shadows as some say.
  2. by   BSNinTX
    There are, of course, a variety of ways to answer this question. As already noted, the 'don't ask, don't tell, don't act policy' applies to some degree. All services accept gay people because the services are not allowed to ask about this. However, the military services fall under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, which prohibits homosexual conduct. However, PHS does not fall under that Code unless assigned to a DOD component. As such, homosexual conduct is not prohibited.

    The larger question may be how one's peers accept the matter. This can vary greatly be agency, by location, etc. In the Bureau of Prisons, for example, a macho culture dominates and homosexuality is not necessary as well accepted as in other circles.
  3. by   Ultim0
    Quote from wtbcrna
    Try this link first for an overview: http://dcp.psc.gov/prom_faq.asp#eligible

    It is complicated like everything else in the military, but here is the book that trys to explain everything. http://dcp.psc.gov/eccis/documents/CCPM23_3_4.pdf
    The chart is on page 18, but you have to read through most of the other stuff to decipher it.

    USPHS complicates it even more by using temporary rank and permanent rank. While on AD you will have a temporary rank that will usually be higher than your permanent rank, which the only time it matters is when you preparing for retirement. Your temporary rank is what is used for pay and benefits while on AD.

    Here is a comparison: (using new nurses fresh out of school)

    AF:

    Start out as an O-1; promote automatically up to O-3 ( will take 4 yrs AD); O-4 is taking another 9-12 years before you actually pin on O-4 and the since it is competive board the promition rate is running about 65% according to the last briefing I had. O-5 is generally another 5+ years with a promotion rate in 40th percent. O-6 another 5+ years and the promotion rates, I believe, are currently around 25% of those that go in front of the board.

    USPHS:

    Start out as an O-2; promote automatically to O-3 and O-4 (so 100% of the nurses will promote to O-4 and on time), 8 years total time to make O-4; 5 more years to for O-5; and 5 more years to make O-6. I only personally know a few UPHS officers, but I haven't heard of any of them not getting promoted when their package goes in front of the board.

    AF: (total time)................ USPHS: (total time)
    O-1: start...........................skip
    O-2: 2yrs ..........................O-2: start
    O-3: 4yrs...........................O-3: 4yrs
    O-4: 13-15+yrs..................O-4: 8yrs
    O-5: 18-20yrs....................O-5: 13yrs

    I hope this explains some of it.
    Are the USPHS time in service requirements posted somewhere? How about education requirements for promotion? I have searched google to no avail. Thanks!
  4. by   BSNinTX
    Not sure who answered the time in service / time in grade question, but they are not entirely correct.

    If you have a BSN, you start as an O-2; a student in school on contract starts as an O-1. Promotion for nurses is non-competitive from O-2 to O-3 based on satisfactory performance, no negative personnel actions, and a total of 8 years of educated and experience credit. Thus, if you have a 4 year degree and 4 years experience, you could start as an O-3 (I did). If not, you go up when you reach that point; any promotion requires at least six months time in service. Promotion to O-4 requires 12 years of experience and education credit and is competitive. O-5 requires 17 years and O-6 requires 23 years; I do not recall the time in service and time in grade requirements for these but suffice to say that you will have them covered when you promote based on education and experience credit so I really don't worry about them.

    Promotion to O-4 and beyond is competitive. Each year you are eligible, you are scored by a five member board of O-6 officers in your category (i.e., nurses for nurses, physicians for physicians, etc.). They look at many factors including experience, responsibility, career progression, advanced education, training, credentials, officership, extra activities, Corps support activities, etc., etc. There are goals set for each area for each promotion level and an officer is encouraged to be grounded and rounded in all areas, though no one can attain all of them. First, you are either recommended for promotion or not recommended for promotion. Then, you are scored based on these factors. Everyone eligible for promotion in your grade is then ranked. Based on the needs of the Corps, a particular number (or percent) of officer are selected for promotion. For example, last year 90% of nurses eligible for promotion to O-4 were promoted. Thus, the top 90% were promoted, as ranked by board scoring.

    With that said, education is merely one aspect of promotion. At the O-4 level, it is recommended that you start a graduate degree in nursing, public health, or a related field such as health care administration. At the O-5 level, it is recommended that you have completed the degree. At the O-6 level, starting a PhD is considered beneficial. However, it should be remembered that these are benchmarks rather than requirements. A person without a graduate degree can still promote based on excellent performance and other factors.

    Yes, compared to other services we promote faster. However, many officers get passed over - not because they are not qualified but because they are not the best qualified. Every year you are eligible, you are scored and ranked for promotion. The "passing grade" changes each year. For example, if a lot of senior officers retire, more spaces open up. Likewise, when the Corps is expanding, more senior slots open. If the Corps is contracting (not happened in a while) or senior officers are hanging on, the slots dry up. I've seen the promotion percent for O-6 actually be higher than the percentage for O-5, which is counterintuitive until you think about it from a force management needs perspective.

    Hope this helps and if I can answer anything else, let me know.
  5. by   Ultim0
    Quote from BSNinTX
    Not sure who answered the time in service / time in grade question, but they are not entirely correct.

    If you have a BSN, you start as an O-2; a student in school on contract starts as an O-1. Promotion for nurses is non-competitive from O-2 to O-3 based on satisfactory performance, no negative personnel actions, and a total of 8 years of educated and experience credit. Thus, if you have a 4 year degree and 4 years experience, you could start as an O-3 (I did). If not, you go up when you reach that point; any promotion requires at least six months time in service. Promotion to O-4 requires 12 years of experience and education credit and is competitive. O-5 requires 17 years and O-6 requires 23 years; I do not recall the time in service and time in grade requirements for these but suffice to say that you will have them covered when you promote based on education and experience credit so I really don't worry about them.

    Promotion to O-4 and beyond is competitive. Each year you are eligible, you are scored by a five member board of O-6 officers in your category (i.e., nurses for nurses, physicians for physicians, etc.). They look at many factors including experience, responsibility, career progression, advanced education, training, credentials, officership, extra activities, Corps support activities, etc., etc. There are goals set for each area for each promotion level and an officer is encouraged to be grounded and rounded in all areas, though no one can attain all of them. First, you are either recommended for promotion or not recommended for promotion. Then, you are scored based on these factors. Everyone eligible for promotion in your grade is then ranked. Based on the needs of the Corps, a particular number (or percent) of officer are selected for promotion. For example, last year 90% of nurses eligible for promotion to O-4 were promoted. Thus, the top 90% were promoted, as ranked by board scoring.

    With that said, education is merely one aspect of promotion. At the O-4 level, it is recommended that you start a graduate degree in nursing, public health, or a related field such as health care administration. At the O-5 level, it is recommended that you have completed the degree. At the O-6 level, starting a PhD is considered beneficial. However, it should be remembered that these are benchmarks rather than requirements. A person without a graduate degree can still promote based on excellent performance and other factors.

    Yes, compared to other services we promote faster. However, many officers get passed over - not because they are not qualified but because they are not the best qualified. Every year you are eligible, you are scored and ranked for promotion. The "passing grade" changes each year. For example, if a lot of senior officers retire, more spaces open up. Likewise, when the Corps is expanding, more senior slots open. If the Corps is contracting (not happened in a while) or senior officers are hanging on, the slots dry up. I've seen the promotion percent for O-6 actually be higher than the percentage for O-5, which is counterintuitive until you think about it from a force management needs perspective.

    Hope this helps and if I can answer anything else, let me know.
    Thanks for clarifying this :-)
  6. by   bds165
    Hello,

    I served as a commissioned officer in another branch (Air Force) for 4 1/2 years. Will I have to attend OBC for the CC? I have about 18 months left on my BSN and I'm seriously considering the USPHS.

    I've yet to speak to a recruiter. Will my prior service affect my rank/pay grade?

    This thread has wonderful information! Thanks a bunch!
  7. by   BSNinTX
    Yes, prior service must attend OBC. It's an indoctrination in PHS, which includes military courtesies and the like but extends far beyong that. Thus, everyone attends.

    Yes, prior service time counts for pay and retirement.

    No, prior service time will not help with rank unless you were prior service with a higher rank than you would otherwise achieve (say, for example, that you were an O-3 engineer and then went to nursing school and entered as a new grad).

    If you have that much left on the BSN and you are considering PHS, I would suggest looking into the Seniro COSTEP program...it pays you while you are in school.

close