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Richard Phillips

Navy corpsmen treat sailors, Marines and sometimes enemies

Navy corpsmen treat sailors, Marines and sometimes enemies

In the spring of 2011, Miami native Noel Martinez found himself on a small craft in the middle of the night headed for a pirate "mother ship" off the coast of Somalia. As a Navy independent duty corpsman (IDC), situations like that are not uncommon. The enlisted corpsmen serve as the senior medical providers for cruisers, destroyers and frigates, as well as many isolated ground units. "If we deploy with a SEAL team, we're the medical asset for that team," Martinez said. "The IDC program itself is designed to put us into these places independently so we can function away from a doctor or medical officer. "We go through a school where they cram almost...

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