corpsman you must learn and adhere to a code of behavior that is based on sound moral beliefs and is so ingrained that it becomes a way of life. Your responsibility as a hospital corpsman is to exhibit ethical behavrior in the three major areas as discussed below.
You must always recognize your obligation to give the best care that you are capable of giving to every patient committed to your charge. This care must reflect a belief in the worth and dignity of every patient as a human being. Courteous, efficient, and conscientious service is the mark of an outstanding corpsman. Respect for patients right to privacy must always be honored, particularly when they disclose privileged information to you. Such information should never be repeated to any unauthorized person. Your patients welfare is of paramount importance.
Physicians, nurses, and hospital corpsmen comprise the team dedicated to healing the patient. Mutual respect and understanding of the role and the person by each member is of vital importance to the success of the team. Cooperation of all the members is essential. The physician, as team leader, carries the overall responsibility for the welfare of the patient. The physician prescribes the medical treatment and oversees the total care of all patients. The nurse is responsible for meeting the nursing needs of the patient and ensuring that all of the physicians orders and nursing measures are carried out accurately. Both the physician and nurse are responsible for instructing hospital corpsmen in the performance of their duties. The hospital corpsman is responsible for carrying out the physicians and nurses orders and giving proper nursing care to patients.
The heritage of the Hospital Corps places a special burden on every new member. You are responsible for upholding its proud tradition. The tradition of service with distinction has been established by your predecessors in every corner of the world and under every kind of adversity. Your patient, the members of the team you serve, and your shipmates deserve your respect and cooperation. They merit your confidence. Respect and confidence coupled with your skill will allow you to carry on in the proud tradition of the Hospital Corps. Professional ethics is the key to service with distinction.
The minimum skills, both professional and military, required for advancement to HM3 and HM2 are spelled out in the Manual of Navy Enlisted Manpower and Personnel Classifications and Occupational Standards (NAVPERS 18086 series). However, there are some skills that, although not officially required, are and will be desirable in an outstanding petty officer. Acquiring these skills is entirely up to you; however, having them will be decidedly to your advantage. Some of these desired skills are as follow:
1. Clerical ability. Learn to read and complete medical forms, such as health records and medical reports, clearly and accurately.
3. At one time or another you may be called upon to use this equipment. Ability to read and understand the various naval directives and regulations.
4. Develop a working acquaintance with the Navy Directives System. Penmanship. Begin now to develop a neat, legible handwriting.
5. Communication. Learn to express your thoughts in writing and practice good grammar. Listening is an important part of the process, especially in the health care area.
A hospital corpsman must develop many personal traits that apply to all petty officers. You can get a general understanding of them by referring to Military Requirements for Petty Officer Third Class (NAVEDTRA 10044) and Military Requirements for Petty Officer Second Class (NAVEDTRA 10045).
The following traits, however, apply especially to your Hospital Corps duties and are essential for good performance.