Biomedical Sciences Corps Appreciation week kicks off

  • Published
  • By Lt. Col. Rena Nicholas
  • 460th Medical Operations Squadron

The Air Force Medical Service is recognizing the Biomedical Sciences Corps with the BSC Appreciation week, which is designated from January 23-27, 2017. 

The BSC is the most diverse corps in the medical services.  The BSC dates back to 1917 when the Sanitary Corps was established to address infectious diseases and has grown to include a wide range of medical professions. 

Currently, the BSC consists of 17 different AFSCs including laboratory officers, physician assistants, mental health providers, bioenvironmental engineers, optometry, dieticians, pharmacy, physical therapy, public health officers, aerospace physiology, and others. 

The BSC motto, “United in the Mission” reflects the combined efforts of the corps to maintain health and optimize performance in the military missions.  Today, BSCs are found in the MTFs, embedded in operational units, and located at key policy positions across the Air Force. Each program has unique requirements to attain a commission. At a minimum, applicants must be a U.S. citizens, meet the age requirements, meet Air Force standards and be medically qualified for worldwide deployment.  

Additionally, the BSC has a number of commissioning opportunities for Airmen who have an interest in these fields.  In FY 17, the BSC offered commissioning programs for physical therapy, clinical psychology, and physician assistants.  These programs were open to active duty, AFROTC, and USAFA cadets. 

In these programs, selectees are commissioned, if applicable, sent to training programs, and then graduate as medics in their respective positions.  The Air Force also has direct accession programs in social work, public health, or bioenvironmental engineering for those who meet the eligibility requirements and have completed the necessary education and training. 

Lastly, the Health Professions Scholarship Program provides single- or multi-year scholarships for individuals to attend medical and graduate schools with the expectation that awardees commission and serve in their respective specialties in the Air Force.  (More information can be found on MyPers by searching “BSC Commissioning.”)

Some of the most important innovations and health-related contributions to the Air Force have come from the BSCs. Officers like Maj. Alfred Felipe, 460th Medical Operations Squadron bioenvironmental element chief, provides occupational health support to industrial work center employees by maintaining that jobs are done in a safe and healthy way.  

Associated officers have led the way in research, translational medicine, and daily care for service members and their families.  Team Buckley extends its thanks to these dedicated professionals who continuously strive to improve health and fitness in the population.