U.S. NAVY SURFACE WARFARE MEDICAL CORPS BADGE

Members of the United States Navy Medical Corps seeking their Surface Warfare qualification don’t face any fewer challenges than do officers from other Corps that make up the Navy’s Medical Department. But considering just how much time they’ve invested in study and practice in order to become practicing physicians in the Navy, the amount of work required to earn the Surface Warfare Medical Department Officer (SWMDO) qualification might seem less daunting than it really is.

Depending on their assignment, members of the Medical Corps assigned to shipboard duty will attend either the Surface Warfare Medical Department Officer Indoctrination Course (SWMDOIC) or the Surface Warfare Medical Officer Indoctrination Course ( SWMOIC). The SWMDOIC is a 12-day orientation course open to members of the Medical Corps, Nurse Corps, or Medical Service Corps within eight months of reporting for assignment to either a ship, a Fleet Surgical Team, or a Marine Corps unit that’s deploying with an ESG (Expeditionary Strike Group). The SWMOIC, on the other hand, is a more extensive three-week course designed strictly for Medical Corps officers who have been assigned to the surface fleet as either Ships Medical Officer or Senior Medical Officers.

Once aboard, Medical Corps officers can begin completing the Surface Warfare Officer Division Officer Course (SWOSDOC) At-Sea Curriculum, scoring at least 80 percent on all module tests. Arguably one of the most crucial prerequisites for earning the SWMDO is completion of six Basic Damage Control (DC) Watchstations: Basic First Aid, Fire Watch Stander, Basic CBR (Chemical, Biological, and Radiological) Defense, Damage Control, and DC Communications.

After completing these and sundry other Personnel Qualification Standards, candidates for Surface Warfare qualification must display their knowledge of the surface vessel’s mission, capabilities, system, and their relationships in front of a multi-member board.

The exception to these rules is Medical Corps officers who have previously been designated as Surface Warfare officer or earned their Surface Warfare qualification. In those instances, the officers may file a request to be receive their SWMDO qualification as twelve months of satisfactory service in an appropriate billet (this of course includes having no unsatisfactory grades on medical inspections or evaluations).
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