I can't believe I am getting paid to do something I love so much. (I admit, I don't always express this while I'm in school, but...I'm a lucky, lucky girl) Today marked the first day of my 2 week training period of the Air Force's Aerospace Medicine Primary Course. It's is the first step enroute to becoming a flight surgeon. Please note that the term "flight surgeon" is a historical one from the days when any physician in the military was considered a surgeon.
Wikipedia had a pretty good definition so here's a condensed version of what they had to say:
A flight surgeon is primarily responsible for the medical evaluation, certification and treatment of aviation personnel. They perform routine, periodic medical examinations for the personnel and are trained to fill general public health and occupational and preventive medicine roles. Flight surgeons are typically on flight status (i.e., they log flight hours), but are not required to be rated or licensed pilots. They may be called upon to provide medical consultation as members of an investigation board into a military or NASA aviation or spaceflight mishap. Occasionally, they may serve to provide in-flight care to patients being evacuated via aeromedical evacuation.I'm currently at Wright Patterson AFB and just being back on a base has been a lot of fun. It's weird transitioning from knowing the Air Force as a trainee to an actual officer, but I feel like today was a good step forward as I was reminded by a Major in my program that we are on a live base, so saluting is necessary, oops! I'm also getting used to using the words sir and ma'am again which just isn't natural when you don't come from the south.
Overall though, SO aweome. After completing this program, the doc gets their "wings" and, if you ask me, is much more of a military officer than a medical doctor. It's unparalleled in the civilian world of medicine. So much more variety, action, and flying. It's got me thinking...I'll keep you posted. Oh, and I get to fly! (weather permitting) I'm so excited!
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