I'm thinking of joining either the TA as a CMT or RAF Reserve as a Medical Assistant. I've read all the recruiting brochures, web sites and other threads & now I'm trying to get an honest answer from practioners.

I know that I'll have to start at the bottom, at the start be a "go-fer", won't get any gucci courses and only get out what I put in etc.

However, one of the reaons I want to do this is longer term I want to be a civvie nurse and am trying to get some experience to build upon.

So, what are the pro's and con's, is one role more relevant for my longer term aims, how much patient care is involved or is it bag carrying and tentage etc.

This is not an Army v RAF post...I'm not bothered what colour the uniform is, just which one is more relevant.

Well I dont know much about Raf MA other than what I have seen on the official blurb. As a CMT(V) it will depend on the unit nearest you as to how much relevant experience you gain. If you join a Field Hospital or Evac Sqn without medical quals you can expect to build tents and stag on as the greatest part of your job - with hands on med experience ( albeit in a training environment) improving as you complete your courses and gain confidence of med staff but not by a great deal in my experience. If you are a CMT in Inf or Other arms units - you will pretty much do your courses and provide med cover - less in the way of tentage perhaps but you will qualify for stagging on aswell.
My understanding of the MA in RAFR role is that they are largely geared towards the Aeromed ( casualty evacuation) role - so tend not to need tents and give the RAF Regt inordinate amounts of cash to stag on for them - so on a purely medical basis this has less distractions.
If I knew then what I know now :D
Could somebody joining the TA as a CMT pay for their own courses to supplement their training and improve their chances of climbing the food chain?

I have no problem stagging on and want to get on tours in any capacity possible, but I do want to move forward as well. I'm not getting any younger.

Thank you.
It doesn't really work like that, well it doesn't in my unit. I have a CMT buddy who is training to be a doctor and she is no more higher up the food chain than i, and also a mate who is an ambulance tech in civi street. Army 'medic-ing' a very different beast, im not sure how many civi courses include a care under fire module... Due to clinical governance etc there is little room for manouvre unless trained by the Army either on courses or by your MO etc. Besides, time-in and courses don't ALWAYS equate to promotion.

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