WASHINGTON (NNS) -- The Navy Surgeon General sent a message to the Medical Service Corps in celebration of its birthday Aug. 4.
"Today we celebrate the 64th Birthday of our Medical Service Corps," said Vice Adm. Adam M. Robinson, Jr., Navy surgeon general and chief, Bureau of Medicine and Surgery. "Since its establishment shortly after the conclusion of World War II, the men and women of the Medical Service Corps have served around the world in times of peace and war."
The corps was established under President Harry S. Truman who signed the Army-Navy Medical Service Corps Act on Aug. 4, 1947, to provide a permanent commissioned corps of specialists to complement the existing Medical Department officer corps. Originally comprised of four specialties (Supply and Administration, Medical Allied Sciences, Optometry and Pharmacy), the Navy's Medical Service Corps now has more than 3,200 active duty and reserve officers in 32 specialties.
"The Medical Service Corps is, in a way, the jack of all trades," said Robinson. "It has scientists, researchers, providers, and administrators, all in one corps. In fact, the Medical Service Corps is the most diverse corps in Navy Medicine, comprised of 31 subspecialties. It truly is one corps of many specialties meeting today's needs and tomorrow's challenges."
The corps' readiness mission ensures that service men and women are medically fit and ready to deploy around the world in harm's way while also providing expeditionary medical support to those deployed in conflict zones, according to Robinson. The health benefit mission serves to provide patient and family-centered care for Sailors and Marines and their families.
Medical Service Corps officers serve at sea, on deployments and humanitarian missions, and at clinics, inpatient facilities, and research units around the world, according to Robinson. Their work in times of peace and conflict, have earned the Medical Service Corps a prominent place in the proud history of the U.S. Navy.
"It is their honor, courage, and commitment that we honor today," said Robinson. "To the over 3,000 active duty and reservist Medical Corps personnel, I thank you for your service and for the sacrifice of you and your families. Happy Birthday, Medical Service Corps!"
Robinson oversees a global health care network of 63,000 Navy Medical personnel around the world who provide high quality health care to more than one million eligible beneficiaries. Navy Medicine personnel deploy with Sailors and Marines worldwide, providing critical mission support aboard ship, in the air, under the sea and on the battlefield.
For more news from Navy Medicine, visit www.navy.mil/local/mednews/.