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Old 04-05-2018, 01:48 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
29,573 posts, read 47,109,439 times
Reputation: 17297

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On my last boat, I had a subordinate who was having a lot of problems with his shoulder. Mil-Med [Military Medicine] was 'treating' him, and they refused to send him to an actual MD doctor. They formed the opinion that he was malingering. Our 'doc' told me that he was malingering, and he told our entire chain of command the same. After months of this, everyone was convinced that he was malingering. He was sent to Captian's Mast where he was convicted and awarded reduction in pay-grade, half-pay and restriction for a month, and he was processed for an 'other than honorable' discharge. He was sent to squadron for them to process his discharge because our CO hated the sight of this criminal sailor. Since it all stemed from his shoulder hurting, squadron sent this sailor to a civilian MD doctor, who diagnosed a bone spur. He was then sent to a civilian surgeon, who removed the bone spur. While he went through surgery, his discharge continued its process. He came back on-base for his last day in uniform, I saw him and his shoulder was fine [post-surgery].

Because Mil-Med [Military Medicine] had no MD doctors and had refused to refer him to a doctor, they diagnosed him as malingering, he was convicted and punished of that crime, when all along he had a legitimate medical problem that a MD doctor was able to fix.

Depending on how your chain-of-command views this, it could be seen as a health issue or it could be seen as criminal. How your chain-of-command decides to handle it, can make a huge difference.
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Old 04-05-2018, 01:51 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
29,573 posts, read 47,109,439 times
Reputation: 17297
Quote:
Originally Posted by boxus View Post
I have seen way too many time where they try to toss "malingering" on people, it was ridiculous. The issue is they hardly ever speak to the people who are around most with the person with the issues, they just view it from an outside perspective. I even seen people with real injuries not officially accused of malingering, but informal circles among the Chiefs and more senior PO's being thought of as such.

The best counter to such a claim is to seek professional help, preferably outside of the immediate command if able to. A note from an O6 group doctor is much better and more accurate then from the shipboard E6 corpsman.
Mil Med is fine for handing out motrin, but if you have an actual medical problem, you may be better off to find an actual MD doctor to diagnose you.
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Old 04-05-2018, 02:18 PM
 
12,399 posts, read 11,881,004 times
Reputation: 16934
Quote:
Originally Posted by Submariner View Post
Mil Med is fine for handing out motrin, but if you have an actual medical problem, you may be better off to find an actual MD doctor to diagnose you.
That is why I was saying basically go outside the command, push hard for it. Any doc within the command, even at the group level (though I referred going to the group, lol) is an advocate for the command, like HR in a company. Their job is to keep you at sea/on duty, that is it. A person gets unbiased assistance once the issue has to go outside of the command.

I even had this experience, whereas the command was clueless about an injury I had, but did all they could to keep me on duty (I was not even requesting light and limited) and it was not until i kept squawking and was referred to the Air Force doctors did I finally get assistance for the issue and treatment for it, because the Air Force doctor's were not biased nor cared about keeping me on duty or not, just treatment. I ended up only missing a few days of duty due to appointments but other wise was treated, whereas command doctors were just handing motrin and essentially saying "suck it up and get back to work".
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Old 04-05-2018, 02:42 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
29,573 posts, read 47,109,439 times
Reputation: 17297
Quote:
Originally Posted by boxus View Post
That is why I was saying basically go outside the command, push hard for it. Any doc within the command, even at the group level (though I referred going to the group, lol) is an advocate for the command, like HR in a company. Their job is to keep you at sea/on duty, that is it. A person gets unbiased assistance once the issue has to go outside of the command.

I even had this experience, whereas the command was clueless about an injury I had, but did all they could to keep me on duty (I was not even requesting light and limited) and it was not until i kept squawking and was referred to the Air Force doctors did I finally get assistance for the issue and treatment for it, because the Air Force doctor's were not biased nor cared about keeping me on duty or not, just treatment. I ended up only missing a few days of duty due to appointments but other wise was treated, whereas command doctors were just handing motrin and essentially saying "suck it up and get back to work".
My exposure to actual doctors in the military was very limited.

I saw an actual doctor [an MD] at MEPS when I enlisted in 1977, and I saw one for my retirement physical in 2001.

After years of increasing consumption of 'tums' my boat's doc decided that I must have an ulcer, so he sent me to an OB/GYN doctor. The OB/GYN had a camera fitted on the end of a 3-foot garden hose, he used that to do an 'Upper GI' and he took photos of my duodenal ulcer. Which then allowed me to get the right prescription that helped a great deal.
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Old 04-05-2018, 02:57 PM
 
Location: Yucaipa, California
9,581 posts, read 17,566,529 times
Reputation: 6223
Quote:
Originally Posted by Submariner View Post
On my last boat, I had a subordinate who was having a lot of problems with his shoulder. Mil-Med [Military Medicine] was 'treating' him, and they refused to send him to an actual MD doctor. They formed the opinion that he was malingering. Our 'doc' told me that he was malingering, and he told our entire chain of command the same. After months of this, everyone was convinced that he was malingering. He was sent to Captian's Mast where he was convicted and awarded reduction in pay-grade, half-pay and restriction for a month, and he was processed for an 'other than honorable' discharge. He was sent to squadron for them to process his discharge because our CO hated the sight of this criminal sailor. Since it all stemed from his shoulder hurting, squadron sent this sailor to a civilian MD doctor, who diagnosed a bone spur. He was then sent to a civilian surgeon, who removed the bone spur. While he went through surgery, his discharge continued its process. He came back on-base for his last day in uniform, I saw him and his shoulder was fine [post-surgery].

Because Mil-Med [Military Medicine] had no MD doctors and had refused to refer him to a doctor, they diagnosed him as malingering, he was convicted and punished of that crime, when all along he had a legitimate medical problem that a MD doctor was able to fix.

Depending on how your chain-of-command views this, it could be seen as a health issue or it could be seen as criminal. How your chain-of-command decides to handle it, can make a huge difference.
Can he somehow fight this to get at least a honorable discharge ? This is so wrong.
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Old 04-05-2018, 03:18 PM
 
5,545 posts, read 7,544,420 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jordanb810 View Post
Yeah, and then the military wonders why the suicide rate is so high.
If youíre feeling like taking your life you need to tell that to your physician.
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Old 04-05-2018, 06:13 PM
 
Location: Central Massachusetts
4,660 posts, read 4,407,254 times
Reputation: 5876
Quote:
Originally Posted by Submariner View Post
On my last boat, I had a subordinate who was having a lot of problems with his shoulder. Mil-Med [Military Medicine] was 'treating' him, and they refused to send him to an actual MD doctor. They formed the opinion that he was malingering. Our 'doc' told me that he was malingering, and he told our entire chain of command the same. After months of this, everyone was convinced that he was malingering. He was sent to Captian's Mast where he was convicted and awarded reduction in pay-grade, half-pay and restriction for a month, and he was processed for an 'other than honorable' discharge. He was sent to squadron for them to process his discharge because our CO hated the sight of this criminal sailor. Since it all stemed from his shoulder hurting, squadron sent this sailor to a civilian MD doctor, who diagnosed a bone spur. He was then sent to a civilian surgeon, who removed the bone spur. While he went through surgery, his discharge continued its process. He came back on-base for his last day in uniform, I saw him and his shoulder was fine [post-surgery].

Because Mil-Med [Military Medicine] had no MD doctors and had refused to refer him to a doctor, they diagnosed him as malingering, he was convicted and punished of that crime, when all along he had a legitimate medical problem that a MD doctor was able to fix.

Depending on how your chain-of-command views this, it could be seen as a health issue or it could be seen as criminal. How your chain-of-command decides to handle it, can make a huge difference.

Did this story end well for the sailor? Was he able to fight the discharge?
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Old 04-05-2018, 07:14 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
29,573 posts, read 47,109,439 times
Reputation: 17297
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldsoldier1976 View Post
Did this story end well for the sailor? Was he able to fight the discharge?
The last time I spoke with him, he seemed to be happy to at least be out of the military.
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Old 04-06-2018, 04:18 AM
 
923 posts, read 582,938 times
Reputation: 1413
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldsoldier1976 View Post
First off sailor get a grip on yourself and look around for your support. If you are at sea on a boat please seek out the chaplain. If you are back on shore please also seek out the chaplain and talk to someone close to you there.

As one who has been with many service members going through a tough time I can relate to you. Please do not do anything you will regret or will put your family and friends in mourning. This I can say will be the outcome if you decide to take your own life. Your family and friends will be the ones to suffer. I will suffer and I don't even know you from anyone else. For me one life lost to self destruction is one too many. You can also call this number and I hope you can find help. 1-800-273-8255
Start here. This is why the Chaplains are there. Even if you're not religious, go talk to them. The military has become more aware of mental health issues, and there are support programs in place.
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Old 04-06-2018, 05:09 PM
 
5,069 posts, read 5,973,656 times
Reputation: 9586
OP

have you posted back? Hopefully you took some of the good advice here to (1) talk with your chaplain (2) keep seeing your doctor, (3) be a good sailor/work with your NCOs and (4) call the suicide hot line - if that is your fear.

BTW, You are not 'working on an administrative discharge'. It is the commander/skipper/Captain who is handling this action, not you. Now there is a lot the chaplain and doctor can do to make it happen or not happen. So stay involved with them.

One thing they can do is direct you where you can get help for what is bothering you - which is what you really need for your life's sake.

That being said, if you really want out of service after 3 years, it would be in your best interest to try for a medical discharge - if this is a medical problem. Not a chapter release from service.

Wish you the best and hope you focus more on finding help than getting out.
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