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Posted: 9/7/2010 1:55:02 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/7/2010 2:17:49 PM EDT by smhogrefe]
Hi guys, I'm thinking of joining the navy when I graduate. I'll have my PharmD in May (doctorate degree to practice as a licensed pharmacist). I've talked to a recruiter who came to University of Connecticut who specifically addressed pharmacy students. She told me all of the perks and promises the moon. I need another side of the story (if there is one). Anyone out there a Navy pharmacist, know one, is enlisted/commissioned in the Navy currently? Give me your two cents on it in general. I don't plan on joining any time soon and am trying to gather as much information as possible. The benefits seem good, become commissioned as an ensign, and I enjoy hospital pharmacy practice the most.

post edited.
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 2:05:34 PM EDT
Originally Posted By smhogrefe:
Hi guys, I'm thinking of joining the navy when I graduate. I'll have my PharmD in May (doctorate degree to practice as a licensed pharmacist). I've talked to a recruiter who came to University of Connecticut who specifically addressed pharmacy students. She told me all of the perks and promises the moon. I need another side of the story (if there is one). Anyone out there a Navy pharmacist, know one, is enlisted/commissioned in the Navy currently? Give me your two cents on it in general. I don't plan on joining any time soon and am trying to gather as much information as possible. The benefits seem good, become commissioned as a 2nd lieutenant, and I enjoy hospital pharmacy practice the most


uhh I think you mean ensign? 2ndLT doesnt exist in the navy. you're screwing yourself BAD if you go in with a doctorate level degree as an O-1. shouldnt he be able to at least get a O-2/3 for something like that?
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 2:08:35 PM EDT
I will only join if they let me have the Captains cabin.
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 2:15:55 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/7/2010 2:22:26 PM EDT by Miles_Urbanus]
You would be a commissioned officer. Possibly start as an 0-2 or 0-3 depending what the demand is. I know there are student loan repayment deals if you sign up for a fixed amount of time.

As far as I know Pharmacists do not receive Medical special pay in addition to their officers salary. But they do receive a commissioning bonus and a retention bonus.

The Navy doesn't have 2nd Lieutenants. 0-2 in the Navy is a Lieutenant junior grade.

I highly recommend you shop all the services unless you are hell bent for leather on the Navy. In the past there has been considerable differences between certain medical specialties. For example (and I may be botching this) the Army had enlisted PAs while in other services they were commissioned officers.

As far as work environment the medical corps is like military lite. Like lite beer. You will do your job, your patients will be servicemen or their families but it isn't much different from working in a civilian hospital of equal size. My dad was Navy medical corps for 27 years (M
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 2:18:51 PM EDT
I think the OP put O-2 and LT(jg) {the same thing} together and got 2LT {not the same thing}.
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 2:25:24 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/7/2010 2:26:39 PM EDT by Miles_Urbanus]
Why the Navy in particular? Not trying to dissuade you but when I was in the Marine Corps I didn't really enjoy being on ship. Granted there is plenty of shore duty in the Navy too, especially for medical corps. But if you spend any amount of time in the Navy or Marine Corps (which doesn't have its own medical personal) you will end up on float.

What all did the recruiter promise you? Recruiters don't lie outright but they do tend to paint the best picture possible. I know there are tons of benefits and bonuses for medical officers. Especially those that already have their medical training.
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 2:29:33 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/7/2010 2:31:39 PM EDT by Miles_Urbanus]
Looks like the signing bonus is 30K (which they will tax at 27%) don't know if it is lump sum or not.

Navy Health Professions Loan Repayment Program (HPLRP) – Receive up to $80,000 to help repay your graduate school loans by applying to receive $40,000 each year for up to two years.*

To be eligible, you must serve as an Active Duty Medical Service Corps Officer for each year you receive the loan payment.

Offers have many variables. To get details and find out which offer would benefit you most, request that a Navy Officer Recruiter contact you.

http://www.navy.com/navy/careers/healthcare/clinical-care/pharmacy.html


OP don't know if you are aware but there is also the Public Health Service. Benefits look a little better but I would rather be afloat then in BFE Indian rez.
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 4:42:44 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 9/7/2010 4:45:49 PM EDT by Seastate]
The Navy used to have (I been out a WHILE) Pharmacy Techs which were basic Corpsman that had been through another (C) school. I was only stationed at a NavHosp for a couple years but the Pharm Folks were pretty sharp. They counted and used the Baker Cells and the Pharm spot checked them. I'm not sure how they worked controlled meds. Only LARGE ships (IF ANY) would deploy with a real live pharmacist. On the ship we had a Doc and several Corpsmen and we would write our scripts and either send the guy next door to the Pharm/ Lab or run over and fill them ourselves. I could not write for narcs and all ABX had to be counter signed to keep us from hooking up our buddies with the clap.


I'll try to track down some guys that were on bird farms and ask if they had a Pharm on board.
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 4:47:17 PM EDT
Nothing really useful to add to the thread, other than to offer thanks for thinking of serving your country.
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 4:56:53 PM EDT
I graduate nursing school in May and am going into the Navy. If you go through with it, maybe I'll see you at Officer Development School, the training program for direct commissioning routes.
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 5:01:01 PM EDT
If you chose to join and wear the Nations uniform, let me be the first to apologize for the Navy Working Uniform the Nation will make you wear.

I respect THE uniform, but am embarassed we make sailors wear THAT uniform.

Sorry, nothing to add about pharmacists
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 5:17:39 PM EDT
Do it.
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 5:18:56 PM EDT
Navy vet here (subs). I would shop around the Air Force, Navy, Coast Guard and (maybe) Army. See which one offers the best package of student loan reimbursement, entry pay and advancement (pharmacist specific programs). Navy bases are generally horendous. Air Force bases have a reputation for being pretty nice. AF also might offer the oppurtunity to go to Germany. Shop around, do your research.
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 5:19:21 PM EDT
Originally Posted By CarbineDad:
If you chose to join and wear the Nations uniform, let me be the first to apologize for the Navy Working Uniform the Nation will make you wear.

I respect THE uniform, but am embarassed we make sailors wear THAT uniform.

Sorry, nothing to add about pharmacists


Are you talking about the Navy's blue camo abortion?

Pray to the multi-cam gods for a joint service solution. This third world every service gets its own non-camoflauge camoflauge thing has got to stop.
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 5:28:29 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Miles_Urbanus:
Originally Posted By CarbineDad:
If you chose to join and wear the Nations uniform, let me be the first to apologize for the Navy Working Uniform the Nation will make you wear.

I respect THE uniform, but am embarassed we make sailors wear THAT uniform.

Sorry, nothing to add about pharmacists


Are you talking about the Navy's blue camo abortion?

Pray to the multi-cam gods for a joint service solution. This third world every service gets its own non-camoflauge camoflauge thing has got to stop.


It may look like shit but I could care less if it was pink and purple, NWUs are much more functional than utilities... I climb ladders and crawl around engine rooms for a living (even on shore duty where I can't wear coveralls) having a uniform with a shirt that gets tucked in was miserable, not to mention I actually have pockets now to hold the shit I have to carry up those ladders. To me and most of the guys I know who don't work behind a desk the NWUs are a huge improvement.

I would prefer that all the branches went to one style, I know ours "looks" retarded but that is not my top priority.

-Mike
Link Posted: 9/7/2010 5:29:36 PM EDT
In nearly all (or all) if you have a doctorate, you go in as an O-3 and go to a cupcake salute school.
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