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Board for Correction Case No. 178-96

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Board for Correction Case No. 178-96

109.00 Appointment as Commissioned Officer - Recall to active duty

Recommendation of the Board for Correction on Appeal of: xxxxxxx, Case No.178-96

Xxxxxx Appeal for Relief:

Xxxxxx appealed to the Board asking it to:

  1. Correct her original Standard Medical History Form #93 to include intermittent episodes of hypertension and insomnia (previously omitted).
  2. Remove her Xxxx 1990 COER.
  3. Reinstate her in the Corps.

In accordance with its statutory authority, the Board waived the three year statute of limitations on considering Xxxxxx appeal.

Summary of Xxxxxx Arguments and Documentation:

  1. On Xxxxxx 1991 Xxxxxx was informed that she had been terminated from the Corps. She was further informed that "the termination of the commission of a reserve corps officer during the probationary period may not be appealed. Thus, this decision is final."
  2. Xxxxxx was terminated because of her failure to disclose a history of hypertension and insomnia prior to being appointed to the Corps on Xxxxxx 1990. She stated that she never intended to falsify information pertaining to her medical history. She contended that her hypertension had been discussed with the examining physician when she applied for a commission, but because this problem had been stress related, and not chronic, it was not thought to be significant. Her history of insomnia had been an inadvertent omission from her medical record. She also had received a marginal COER rating that contributed to the decision to terminate her appointment. The rating had resulted from a "Relief" schedule at the hospital that adversely affected her performance and health.
  3. On Xxxxxx 1991. she telephoned the Division of Commissioned Personnel {DCP) objecting to the decision and asking if she could seek reappointment at a later date. She was told that she could reapply. On this same day she sent DCP a copy of her xxxxxx 1990 COER which had been favorable and a copy of the "Relief" schedule that led to the marginal COER rating. She also sent a copy of her Medical Discharge Summary from Xxxxx Hospital. She offered this documentation in support of her request for reconsideration.
  4. In Xxxx 1994 she applied for reappointment to the Corps. She was notified on xxxxx 1994 that she did not qualify for reappointment based upon her medical history. She was of the opinion that her disqualification had been based upon the information she had previously withheld in spite of the fact that DCP had told her that this information would not be used against her provided the information on her request for reappointment had been true and accurate.
  5. Following denial of her request for reappointment, she appealed to the Assistant Secretary for Health on Xxxx 1995. She argued that she was in excellent health, both mentally and physically, and that she had not been under a doctor's care for four years {since 1991).
  6. Her letter to the Assistant Secretary for Health was sent to DCP for reply. DCP replied on Xxxx 1995 reiterating her unsuitability for service in the Corps. She believed that she suffered an injustice from the way in which her medical history was used causing her to be terminated from the Corps and not be reappointed.

Summary of Division of Commissioned Personnel's Arguments and Documentation:

  1. Xxxxxx was terminated because she failed to perform her duties in a manner expected of an officer in the uniformed service. Her Xxxx 1990 COER documented a deterioration in her performance. She did not claim that her COER had been incorrect. Her rebuttal did not refute her COER ratings but only, explained the circumstances surrounding her performance. Consistent with the recommendations of her treating physician at Xxxxx hospital, the decision to terminate her had been based on her job performance.
  2. Additionally, DCP discovered that Xxxxxx failed to disclose information that would have disqualified her for an appointment in the Corps. She failed to disclose that she had high blood pressure, had trouble sleeping, and used alcohol to assist her in doing so. Her medical qualifications for an appointment had been based on false information. Failure to disclose requested information, regardless of intent or inattention, is conduct that disqualifies an applicant for an appointment. Her termination was consistent with DCP policy.
  3. Even if the Board should correct Xxxxxx original Standard Medical History Form #93 to include intermittent episodes of hypertension and insomnia as she requested, she still would not have qualified for an appointment in the Corps.
  4. DCP did not mislead Xxxxxx with respect to the association of her previous medical history to her application for reappointment. She had been advised that although she could reapply, it was doubtful that she would be reappointed. DCP disqualified her for reappointment based on her medical history and her employment history.
  5. The medical information Xxxxxx provided in support of her Board request documented that in 1996 she was treated for primary insomnia and a major affective disorder. On the basis of this information, she was not medically qualified for an appointment at the time of her appeal when she requested reinstatement in the Corps.

Board Action on Xxxxxx Appeal:

Date of Board Meeting: Xxxx 1996

Board Staff:

Norman E. Prince, Jr.
Staff Director
Program Support Center Acting Executive Director
Board for Correction of PHS Commissioned Corps Records

Thomas E. White, Ph.D.
Human Resources Service
Executive Secretary Board for Correction of PHS Commissioned Corps Records

Members of the Board:

J. Michael Hamilton, M.D.
Chairperson of the Board and Chief, Clinical Investigations Branch
NCI, Navy Medical Oncology Branch, NIH

Findings, Conclusion and Recommendation:

Findings

  1. The question of whether DCP had inappropriately obtained information on Xxxxxx medical problems causing her to be terminated from the Corps was not an issue in this case since this information had been included in the medical report sent to DCP by the hospital at Xxxxx xxxx xxx dealing with her hospitalization while on active duty.
  2. The report contained information dealing with her history of hypertension and insomnia which she withheld when she initially applied for a commission. Had this information been available, she would not have qualified for a commission. The difficulties she experienced from working on a rotating shift seemed to have precluded her from performing the duties of a nurse since rotation was an essential part of the profession.
  3. Her previous medical problems were revealed only after she came on active duty. Additionally, she experienced mental problems after she came on active duty which raised more concerns about her ability to perform the duties of a nurse in the uniformed service.
  4. Her marginal performance after she came on active duty questioned her retention in the Corps.
  5. When she applied for reappointment, DCP acted upon the total record which included the medical information which had been withheld and her mental problems and employment history after her call to active duty.

Conclusion

The Board concluded that Xxxxxx did not meet the requirements for appointment in the Corps or for reappointment due to her history of medical and mental problems and her performance as an officer while on active duty.

Therefore:

Recommendation

After considering all of the documentation received, the Board members recommend that Xxxxxx appeal for relief be denied. This requires no correction to her record.

We certify that the above recommendation reflects the views and actions taken by the Board members on Xxxxxx appeal and that they have concurred in it.

We certify, further, that the Case Record, shown as an Attachment, contains all of the documentation received on Xxxxxx appeal; and in addition to applicable statutes, regulations and policies, it was considered by the Board members in arriving at this recommendation.

Finally, we certify that a quorum of Board members was present on Xxxx 1996 when Xxxxxx appeal was considered.

If you approve, please sign below.

J. Michael Hamilton M.D.
Chairperson of the Board and Chief, Clinical Investigations Branch
NCI, Navy Medical Oncology Branch, NIH

Reviewed and Approved:

I hereby approve the Board members' recommendation on Xxxxxx appeal considered in accordance with P.L 96-76, Public Health Service Act, Section 31.2, Section 221a{a) {12) {42 U.S.C. 213a{a) {12) extending the provisions of 10 U.S.C. 1552.

Lynnda M. Regan
Director
Program Support Center

Attachment 1: Case Record


Anyone wishing to obtain an un-redacted copy of any of the decisions should submit a request for the un-redacted decision under the federal Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Such requests should be directed to the PHS FOIA Office, Parklawn Building, Room 17 A-46, 5600 Fishers Lane, Rockville, MD 20857; telephone 301-443-5252; fax 301-443-0925.