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«U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Program Support Center Human Resources Service Division of Commissioned Personnel 5600 Fishers Lane, ...»

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COMMISSIONED OFFICER'S

HANDBOOK

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

Program Support Center

Human Resources Service

Division of Commissioned Personnel

5600 Fishers Lane, Room 4A-15

Rockville, MD 20857-0001

TABLE OF CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION......................................................................... 1 RESPONSIBILITIES OF COMMISSIONED CORPS OFFICERS......................... 1 ADMINISTRATION OF THE COMMISSIONED CORPS PERSONNEL SYSTEM.......... 2

SURGEON GENERAL’ POLICY ADVISORY COUNCIL REPRESENTATIVES AND

S COMMISSIONED CORPS LIAISONS......................................... 2 FUNCTIONS OF THE DIVISION OF COMMISSIONED PERSONNEL (DCP)............. 2 MISSION AND HISTORY.................................................................. 4 MISSION......................................................................... 4 THE DEVELOPING NATION....................................................... 5 WESTWARD HO.................................................................. 5 1870 - 1916........................................................................ 6 1917 - 1944........................................................................ 7 EXPANDING HEALTH RESOURCES................................................ 8 PHS TODAY...................................................................... 9 OPERATING DIVISIONS OF PHS.......................................................... 10 INTRODUCTION.......................................................

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INDEX.................................................................................. 120 This Handbook is for informational purposes only. Official commissioned corps policies and procedures are set forth in applicable statutes, regulations, Commissioned Corps Personnel Manual INSTRUCTIONs and amendments thereto. Conflicting guidance should be discussed with Operating Division/Program personnel officials or the Division of Commissioned Personnel.

PREFACE

The "Commissioned Corps Officer's Handbook 1998" has been revised to provide up-to-date information.

The Handbook replaces the Spring 1994 Commissioned Officer’ Handbook. The Handbook objectives are:

s !

To provide new officers and their dependents with an overview of the commissioned corps personnel system;

!

To provide career officers with updated information covering the significant statutory, regulatory, and policy changes affecting the commissioned corps; and !

To provide management with a document which can be used for orientation of officers as well as for others who need information about the commissioned corps.

In this Handbook we provide a summary of essential topics. However, the content is not exhaustive. More detailed information is available in the Commissioned Corps Personnel Manual (CCPM) which is maintained by administrative offices throughout the Operating Divisions/Programs to which commissioned officers are assigned. From time to time we also distribute selected CCPM INSTRUCTIONs which may be of immediate interest to officers.

This Handbook will be revised periodically to reflect changes in policies, organizations, and missions. If you have constructive comments that would help us make this Handbook more useful to you, please submit them to us in writing.

TABLES

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Officers take the following oath upon entering the Corps:

“I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office upon which I am about to enter, so help me God.

I am willing to serve in any area or position or wherever the exigencies of the Service may require.

I am not participating in any strike against the Government of the United States or any agency thereof, and I will not so participate while an employee of the Government of the United States or any agency thereof.

I have not, nor has anyone in my behalf, given, transferred, promised, or paid any consideration for or in expectation of hope of receiving assistance in securing such appointment.”

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B. ADMINISTRATION OF THE COMMISSIONED CORPS PERSONNEL SYSTEM

The commissioned corps personnel system is administered at several levels. An officer should understand the roles and responsibilities of the various management levels in order to know where to go for information, assistance, and support in matters pertaining to the personnel system.

An officer's supervisor and administrative officer are the principal sources of information concerning the personnel system. A supervisor's responsibilities include: approving all travel, leave, and training;

preparing performance evaluations; making recommendations for promotions, reassignments, assimilation, and awards; initiating disciplinary action, fitness for duty, and probationary reviews;

updating billets; reviewing and/or approving outside activities; and assisting officers with career development. The administrative officer provides support to the supervisor by maintaining the Commissioned Corps Personnel Manual (CCPM) and the Joint Federal Travel Regulations (JFTR), and maintaining detailed information about personnel procedures and policies, especially any changes. An officer's supervisor or administrative officer should always be consulted for information and assistance on any personnel problem. If they do not know the answer, the officer should review the relevant chapters of the CCPM or the JFTR with them to determine what written instruction is provided.

The second level of support to the supervisor and the administrative officer is the area and/or headquarters personnel office. These offices will often have an individual who is trained and experienced in commissioned corps personnel matters, who keeps up-to-date on changes in procedures and policies. Officers must follow the chain of command in seeking information or resolution of a problem.

If the officer is seeking information concerning a unique or complex situation, or something with potential adverse consequences to the officer, the inquiry should be made in writing, and a written response should be requested.

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Each OPDIV also has a Commissioned Corps Liaison who interacts directly with DCP. The Surgeon General’ Policy Advisory Council Representatives and Commissioned Corps Liaisons have procedures s within their respective OPDIVs for disseminating information and for receiving comments on various issues and problems under consideration. Each officer should learn the method used by his/her OPDIV.

D. FUNCTIONS OF THE DIVISION OF COMMISSIONED PERSONNEL (DCP)

The commissioned corps is centrally administered by DCP, a servicing personnel office that develops policy and procedures related to the payroll and personnel system. Regulations, policies, and procedures for the commissioned corps personnel system are contained in the CCPM which is issued by DCP to all administrative and personnel officers in each OPDIV with commissioned corps officers.

An officer will not usually need to go beyond his/her OPDIV contacts to get the necessary assistance and information. An inquiry to DCP should be done in writing to assure that the inquiry is placed within DCP's internal assignment and tracking system. Officers need to be familiar with the many functions

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performed by DCP and its four branches. DCP responsibilities are organized as follows:

1. Office of the Director (301) 594-3000 - The Director's office is responsible for the day-to-day administration of the Corps and legislative proposals affecting the Corps, officer's misconduct, grievance procedures, equal employment opportunity issues, the leave systems (except sick leave), Commissioned Corps Bulletin, and issues that are not the responsibility of any of the DCP branches.

2. Personnel Services Branch (PSB) (301) 594-3108 - This branch is responsible for policies and procedures regarding retirement, the promotion and assimilation of an officer, performance review of officers, Corps awards program, uniforms, billets, assistance to officers, families, and survivors in obtaining benefits to which they are entitled, Defense Enrollment Eligibility Reporting System (identification cards), and maintenance of the Official Personnel Folder (OPF) and associated Privacy and Freedom of Information Acts activity.

Transactions and Applications Section (TAS) (301) 594-3130 - TAS is a section of the Personnel Services Branch and is responsible for policies and procedures for personnel actions, for issuing personnel orders, and for the standards for an individual seeking appointment as a commissioned officer.

3. Medical Affairs Branch (MAB) (301) 594-6330 - This branch is responsible for policy and procedure development and administration in the areas of applicant physical qualification, medical limited tours, sick leave use, fitness for duty, and disability separation. The branch is also responsible for the overall management of health care access for active-duty officers and the fiscal management of health care claims for active-duty and retired officers of PHS and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and NOAA wage marines.

The branch maintains the health records for an officer including records of sick leave. OPDIVs and promotion boards do not have access to confidential medical information.

4. Officer Development Branch (ODB) (301) 594-3360 - This branch provides consultation, assistance, and services to OPDIVs, Professional Advisory Committees, Chief Professional Officers, applicants, and officers to build and support a cadre of health professionals through activities that facilitate career development and access to benefits. The branch interprets the JFTR, oversees long-term training, and provides career counseling/planning and officer advocacy and activities which are designed to assist officers and OPDIVs in matching career preferences/qualifications with vacancies. Staffing officers are available for assistance in developing career strategies, OPF reviews in person or by telephone, assistance with interagency reassignment/transfers, and assistance in resolving issues when OPDIV involvement has been unsuccessful or is not indicated. The branch monitors the professional licensure, certification and/or registration of active-duty officers, and oversees the Junior Commissioned Officer Student Training and Extern Program (JRCOSTEP), Senior (SRCOSTEP), and the Inactive Reserve Corps.

5. Compensation Branch (CB) (301) 594-2963 - This branch is responsible for active-duty pay and allowances, retired pay issues, annuity payments, special pay for certain officers, deductions (e.g., tax withholding, social security, life insurance), and indebtedness or garnishment of pay.

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