Medical Standards for Entry

Discussion in 'Stickies/Frequently Asked Questions' started by Ninja_Stoker, Jan 9, 2013.

  1. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker Careers Adviser

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Posts:
    28,980
    Updated: Feb 2016

    Please note that the AFCO staff are not medically qualified and that the decision regarding medical suitability for enlistment is determined by selection medical staff.


    The aim of this thread is to clarify the medical standards laid down to all applicants joining the Armed Forces. In general terms if an individual fails to meet the medical standard for a specific trade in one of the services, they will most likely do likewise in the equivalent trade in one of the other arms of the Services.

    Despite individual experience expressed to the contrary, the medical standards for entry are different for those currently serving personnel who may develop a condition in service which precludes entry, but does not always stop them continuing to serve after they have joined.

    Rather than enter into the semantics or fairness of the standards outlined below, those wishing to complain about it would be better off directing their complaint at the medical authorities who set the standard they get paid a lot more than me anyway. The following is an extract from guidance notes that are given to every applicant (which invariably remain unread!).

    Naval Service life can be mentally and physically demanding and you will need to be medically fit to meet the challenges ahead.

    The application process includes a full physical and medical assessment to ensure you meet the standards required. The final decision regarding fitness to join the Naval Service is made by Royal Navy medical staff when you join.

    There are pre-existing medical conditions and ongoing illnesses that may prevent you from joining the Naval Service.

    You should check the guidance below on eyesight standards and the sample list of pre-existing conditions. This table is for general guidance only as many conditions that are compatible with civilian employment and sport may be incompatible with military service. This list is not exhaustive, so if you have a medical condition that is not listed, or if you are unsure whether your medical history may affect your eligibility to join, please ask your Careers Adviser who will obtain clarification from medical staff or, if you prefer, you can talk direct to Royal Navy medical staff.


    Note: Careers Advisers and their office staff are not medically qualified and that all final decisions regarding medical suitability for entry are only made by appropriately appointed medical staff.

    Eyesight standards

    The minimum standards for uncorrected and corrected vision vary for different branches in the Royal Navy and are determined by RN medical staff.

    Whatever branch you are applying for, with the exception of Chaplain, your spectacle or contact lens correction must not be greater than +/- 6.00 dioptres. For Chaplains the correction must not be greater than +/- 7.00 dioptres. If you have impaired colour perception (colour blindness) this may restrict the branches that are available to you.

     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2016
  2. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker Careers Adviser

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Posts:
    28,980
    Respiratory Disorders

    Asthma - if medication has been prescribed and / or symptoms experienced in the last 4 years you are ineligible to apply.

    Lung Disease including:
    Chronic Bronchitis
    Emphysema
    Bronchiectasis
    Cystic Fibrosis
    Active Tuberculosis

    Musculoskeletal Disorders

    Any abnormality that interferes with the ability to undertake military training
    Spinal abnormalities
    Certain spinal operations
    Recurrent back pain or sciatica
    Joint disease, pain or limitation of movement
    Hypermobility (laxity) of joints
    Bone or joint operations in the last 12 months
    Anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction
    Recurrent joint dislocations
    Severe deformity following fractures
    Loss of a limb
    Foot abnormalities (e.g. club foot or hammer toe)
    Complete loss of either big toe
    Complete loss of either thumb
    Arthritis and similar conditions
    Fractures in the last 12 months, except fractures of the digits / clavicles

    Eye Disorders

    Monocular / Uniocular vision
    Double vision (including Ophthalmic Migraine)
    Eye disease:
    Glaucoma
    Keratoconus
    Retinitis Pigmentosa
    Corneal grafts or recurrent ulcers
    Cataracts or Cataract surgery
    Detached Retina
    Squint surgery in the last 6 months
    Laser eye surgery (corneal refractive surgery) in the last 12 months (see additional notes below)
    Any eye injury / disorder which causes reduced function or disability

    Ear, Nose & Throat Disorders

    Ongoing acute or chronic ear, nose, throat or sinus disease
    Deafness
    Presence of grommets
    Current eardrum perforation
    Certain surgical procedures
    Recurrent nose bleeds (more than 1 per week)
    Laryngeal conditions affecting breathing
    Persistent facial nerve palsy
    Wegener?s Granulomatosis
    Meni?res disease
    Nasal deformity ? sufficient to interfere with breathing apparatus and similar devices
    Nasal Polyps

    Heart & Cardiovascular Disorders

    Heart Disease
    Certain congenital conditions, repair of Tetralogy of Fallot, Coarctation of the Aorta
    Certain heart valve abnormalities
    High blood pressure
    Disturbances of Heart Rhythm
    Cardiomyopathy
    Reynaud's Disease

    Abdominal & Digestive Disorders

    Ongoing abdominal, digestive or liver disease
    Peptic Ulceration
    Dyspepsia (indigestion) requiring prescription or pharmacy only medication and / or a need for medical follow-up / or loss of time from school / work
    Oesophageal disease including surgical correction of Hiatus Hernia
    Irritable bowel syndrome requiring medication / medical follow-up in the last 2 years
    Crohn?s Disease
    Ulcerative Colitis
    Gluten sensitivity (Coeliac Disease)
    Lactose and other food intolerance
    Untreated Hernia
    Hepatitis
    Pancreatitis
    Cholecystitis, unless surgically treated
    Pilonidal sinus - active or 2 planned surgical procedures

    Urogenital Disorders
    Urethral abnormalities requiring continued treatment
    Urinary incontinence in the last 2 years
    Prostatitis ? acute or chronic
    Genital infections requiring frequent medical intervention or affects normal function
    Kidney stones
    Polycystic Kidney Disease
    Kidney donation for transplant (within last 6 months)
    Non-specific groin or pelvic pain, chronic testicular pain or undiagnosed loin pain

    Nervous System Disorders

    Progressive or recurrent nervous system disease including Multiple Sclerosis
    Epilepsy (or more than 1 seizure after the age of 5)
    Single seizure within the last 10 years
    Migraines or severe headaches within the last 2 years
    Complications following head injury
    Hydrocephalus
    Neurosurgery
    Fainting - recurrent

    Endocrine Disorders

    Diabetes Mellitus - including gestational diabetes
    Pituitary disorders
    Adrenal disorders
    Certain Thyroid disorders

    Skin Disorders

    Active Eczema or Dermatitis within the last 3 years
    Active Psoriasis affecting >5% of the body surface
    Active Acne requiring treatment
    Photosensitivity not controlled with sunscreens
    Scleroderma

    Male Reproductive Disorders

    Chronic scrotal pain
    Current cancer of the testicle or prostate

    Blood Disorders

    Chronic blood diseases (e.g. G6PDD, Sickle Cell disease, congenital Spherocytosis, Haemoglobinopathy or any disorder causing coagulation (clotting) abnormalities)
    Venous Thromboembolism
    Thrombophilia
    Infections
    Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)
    Hepatitis Virus carriers

    Malignancy (cancer)
    Most cancers are considered to place a candidate below the medical entry standard.
    Exceptions: some cancers in childhood or early adult life that have been successfully treated and are regarded as cured.

    Immune system (allergy) disorders

    Allergic reactions and/or anaphylaxis including:
    Nut allergy
    Egg allergy
    Fruit allergy
    Latex allergy
    Vaccine allergy
    EPIPEN (adrenaline injector) requirement

    Climate affected disorders

    Heat Illness
    Frostbite
    Non-freezing Cold Injury

    Other disorders
    Chronic fatigue syndrome and associated disorders
    Congenital, chromosomal and genetic disorders
    Organ transplantation (receiving)
    Splenectomy

    Psychiatric Disorders

    Ongoing psychiatric illness
    Psychosis
    Schizophrenia
    Depression - certain causes / history
    Obsessive-Compulsive disorder
    Autism
    Personality disorder
    Deliberate Self-Harm (more than 1 episode of any type)
    Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
    Alcohol, drug or substance dependence
    Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) unless symptom free and not requiring treatment for at least 3 years
    Anorexia
    Bulimia
     
    • Like Like x 1
  3. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker Careers Adviser

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Posts:
    28,980
    Laser Eye Surgery ? Corneal Refractive Surgery (additional notes)

    In order to be considered the candidate must fulfil the following criteria and provide documentary evidence supporting that:


    • the pre-operative refractive error was not more than +6.00 or -7.00 dioptres (est spherical equivalent) in either eye
    and

    • the best spectacle corrected visual acuity is 6/9 or better in each eye
    and

    • are over the age of 22
    and

    • at least 12 months have elapsed since the date of the last surgery or enhancement procedure
    and

    • there have been no significant visual side effects affecting daily activities or night vision
    and

    • refraction is stable ? defined by 2 refractions on each eye, 6 months apart, with no more than 0.50 dioptre difference in the spherical equivalent in either eye.

    Specialist visual function testing has been carried out with satisfactory results at least 12 months following surgery, including assessment of refraction, symmetry of visual acuity, high and low contrast sensitivity (with and without glare sources) or contrast acuity analysis, astigmatism, glare, corneal clarity, masked mild Hypermetropia and night vision.

     
  4. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker Careers Adviser

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Posts:
    28,980
    Body Piercing

    For health and safety reasons, you will be asked to remove certain items of body piercing jewellery before undergoing physical activity as part of the application and selection process. You will not be allowed to attempt the physical activities if you do not remove the body piercing jewellery when requested. Once you have joined the Naval Service, you will be advised of the rules for wearing body jewellery when on and off duty.

    Body piercing causing holes that will not close up i.e. flesh tunnels are not permitted. Applicants whose flesh tunnels have healed up, or are in the process of healing without leaving a hole, are eligible.
     
  5. MacheteMeetsBiscuit

    MacheteMeetsBiscuit Member

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2011
    Posts:
    1,879
    Ninja, possibly the wrong thread in which case this'll be moved:

    Are we allowed to know our own eyesight scores during the app process?

    Reason: I had my eyetest last week and was given the results in a sealed envelope. As we left the opticians' my mum suggested checking the results so I opened the envelope only to find that the scores and stamp hadn't been filled-in at all, just a few scribbles at the top, it hadn't even been signed. I went back to the desk to get it done properly and the optician was furious I'd opened it, claiming I wasn't allowed to know my results (however I've read no such rule in the guidance notes), got very snotty about it etc. She ticked VA1 and stamped it off for me but wasn't happy to do so at all.
     
  6. rwatkins123

    rwatkins123 Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2011
    Posts:
    209
    i wasn`t allowed to open mine either, i think i had to take it to my medical or send it off but i cant remember it was back in july
     
  7. MacheteMeetsBiscuit

    MacheteMeetsBiscuit Member

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2011
    Posts:
    1,879
    Ah right, thanks. I hadn't read this anywhere but I'm glad I did because nothing was signed-off or ticked at all!
     
  8. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker Careers Adviser

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Posts:
    28,980
    the reason it should be in a sealed envelope is two-fold:

    1. It's a confidential medical report.

    2. The candidate could tamper or alter it.

    That said, if they had submitted an unsigned, dated and stamped Optician Report Form (ORF) it would be invalid & the optician would not be paid - in the meantime your application would've been unnecessarily delayed by sloppy admin but if your AFCO received the ORF in an envelope that had been opened, it could've been refused.

    A double-edged cutting thingy really.
     
  9. MacheteMeetsBiscuit

    MacheteMeetsBiscuit Member

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2011
    Posts:
    1,879
    Ok thanks Ninja, put it in a new envelope without tampering of course
     
  10. George E Porgey

    George E Porgey New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2013
    Posts:
    2
    Injury during training

    Quick question,
    If during training you develop a hernia or similar injury, do you get medically discharged or get put into Hunter and get it sorted?
     
  11. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker Careers Adviser

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Posts:
    28,980
    Difficult to say but I'd guess a hernia requires long term rehabilitation.

    Those joining with a hernia would definitely be discharged if it was on their medical records.

    Those getting a hernia during phase one training would quite possibly medically discharged then advised to re-apply after fully rehabilitated. Those in phase two could possibly be the same if rehab is going to take a long time, but it could be "case by case".
     
  12. George E Porgey

    George E Porgey New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2013
    Posts:
    2
    Thank you for the rapid reply!
     
  13. Richard Bloomfield

    Richard Bloomfield New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2013
    Posts:
    3
    quick question.

    what does it mean by "certain heart valve abnormalities"?
     
  14. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker Careers Adviser

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Posts:
    28,980
    It indicates further information will be required before a definitive decision can be made with regard medical suitability for service. In other words it's advisable to obtain copies of any medical records, including ECGs before attending the initial medical to avoid delays.
     
  15. Richard Bloomfield

    Richard Bloomfield New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2013
    Posts:
    3
    appreciate it!
     
  16. Gos85

    Gos85 Member

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2013
    Posts:
    278
    App Stage:
    TMU
    Hi ninja, what if you we're to have experienced one of the ailments that are listed in the past, however, have since not had any reoccurring issues? Would that prevent eligibility? I can appreciate that you aren't qualified to answer for certain. I had an issue where the doctors thought I had sciatica, however it was one isolated incident and has never caused me any problems since.
     
  17. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker Careers Adviser

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Posts:
    28,980
    Recurrent back pain is an issue, but if a "one of", you'll just need to obtain copies of all notes relating to the condition to demonstrate there has been no recurrence.
     
  18. Gos85

    Gos85 Member

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2013
    Posts:
    278
    App Stage:
    TMU
    thanks ninja, much appreciated.
     
  19. H0LR0YD

    H0LR0YD New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2013
    Posts:
    2
    Eye standers and laser eye surgery

    Where is say about the contact lenses being no more the +/- 6 does that allow for you actually eye sight to be lower. Because in my right eye is -7 and the other -7.5 but my lenses strength is +/- 6. Would this be allowed or would surgery be the only option? Thank you
     
  20. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker Careers Adviser

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2007
    Posts:
    28,980
    You must meet the following eyesight standard for entry:

    Standard 3 (VA3)

    Visual acuity to be achieved without correcting lenses Right 6/60, Left <6/60

    Visual acuity to be achieved with correcting lenses EITHER Right 6/6N5, Left 6/24N10 OR Right 6/9N5, Left 6/18N10 OR Right 6/12N5, 6/12N10.

    Refraction limit
    Spectacle correction (in any meridian)
    +/- 6.00 sphere or cyl

    For laser surgery, besides the fact you must be over age 22 and twelve months clear of surgery, the following applies:

    Entry will not be considered for Radical Keratotomy (RK), or Astigmatic Keratotomy (AK), or any other form of incisional refractive surgery, other than those procedures listed above. All invasive intraocular surgical procedures will remain a bar to entry.

    In order to be considered a candidate must fulfil the following criteria and provide documentary evidence to support that:

    (a) The pre-operative refractive error was not more than +6.00 or 6.00diopter (spherical equivalent) in either eye and;

    (b) The best spectacle corrected visual acuity is 6/9 or better in each eye and;

    (c) At least 12 months have elapsed since the date of the last surgery or enhancement procedure and;

    (d) There has been no significant visual side effects secondary to the surgery affecting daily activities and;

    (e) Refraction is stable; as defined by two refractions performed on each eye at least 6 months apart, with no more than 0.50 diopter difference in the spherical equivalent in each eye.

    (f) Specialist visual function testing has been carried out with satisfactory results at least 12 months following surgery, including assessment of refraction, symmetry of visual acuity, high and low contrast sensitivity (with and without glare sources), astigmatism, glare, corneal clarity, masked mild hypermetropia and night vision.
     

Share This Page