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PRes OT during BMQ - Injury Related


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Good Afternoon,

I am currently completing PRes BMQ and will be graduating shortly. I have been successful in displaying team work and effort which has helped me push towards the top of my platoon. I only share this information to ensure to you that I am not a candidate who is interested in exiting the forces or quitting at any point in my career.

During my training, I had announced a shoulder injury that I have attained in my civilian career (with doctors notes and records tracking the injury prior to course), and had notified my section commander that I intended to continue through regular PT and complete the training without any modification. Now, towards the end of course, I am experiencing worsening conditions with the shoulder and have been re-considering my trade.

I have every belief that this injury will not take away from my availability to serve a long career (30+ years) in the forces, but I believe that a remuster would be wise as I am occupying a position in my unit that requires more consistent physical strength. I want my unit to have the best possible members, and do not want to affect the forces or DND budget negatively by becoming fully trained and unable to do the job efficiently.

I'm interested in switching from my current trade to RMS clerk since I know that I will be able to complete all exercises, tasks, training courses etc without antagonizing my shoulder further past other CF trades. There is clerks in my home base (different unit), but I am curious if an OT during BMQ is possible, and if so, what is the process like (i.e how does it start, what is required of me and what is the estimated wait time if a position is available?

Lastly, if a position is unavailable will I be transferred and sent to a separate RMS clerk unit until I am loaded on course since I am already employed by the CF or will I remain on PAT platoon with my current unit? 

I have not brought this up my chain of command yet since I haven't an idea how to begin this process.

Thank you for your time.
Have you thought about just getting your shoulder sorted out? You weren't specific, but have you gotten all the imaging to get it properly diagnosed? No sense leaving the trade you want if getting everything sorted maybe only delays a trade course by a year.
Thank you for your prompt reply,

Yes I have put a lot of consideration into this since I know it might upset my chain of command as they'll be losing a needed recruit shortly after BMQ which has unfortunately eliminated 2 previous candidates.

results from my imaging show a tear in my rotator cuff and some inflammation / tendonitus. The pain is highly discomforting and there is points where it siezes to 'work' (I don't know how to explain this but it will feel as though the arm passes out from sharp pain suddenly if raised too high or lifting an item too heavy suddenly and will drop anything it is holding or doing).

Civvy doctors recommended I pursue other FT work and I have had to leave my civilian employment field for another since this injury will either remain the same but without the sudden sharp pain that causes it to 'stop working' or get worse (the tear can be treated only to eliminate the issue caused by the tendonitus and inflammation but will always remain torn and weakened with risk of re-occurance during excessive use). I am not interested in quitting the forces on a medical release since I know that I can push through the courses needed of me and still offer a long and successful military career to Canada. I am interested in doing this by any means; so filling a support role where I can complete a lifetime of exercises and career development courses which are less physically exerting would be an honor to me still.

In short I have weighed the possibility of requesting an ED&T for this to heal up but have been advised that it's status puts it to be more of an injury that will need to be cautioned for the duration of my life through careful use. This sadly means that if I wish to participate in all of the exercises, tours and training I can possibly do during my CF service, I will risk admin problems like a CF-98 form when it becomes worsened, or even run the risk of being medically released if it worsens. As a RMS clerk I figured that I would eliminate that risk and still be able to proudly serve at each opportunity available.

I'm highly motivated to serve in the CAF and aside from my pulse disappearing, I don't see this injury or anything else dampening that mindset, trade choice included :salute:.

Would you happen to know if this VOT is possible during BMQ and how to action this / estimated times / process i.e PAT platoon in a new unit or waiting it out in my current one until transferred?

I apologize for not sharing this medical information in greater detail earlier and thank you once again for your time,
For continuity, I read this discussion you started regarding,

CONTACT DERMATITIS; a CAF Medical Disqualification for Primary Res enrollment?

I had no issue with the contact dermatitis; turns out a lot of people can develop or get it and it does not become obstructive to service aside from not being able to use bar soaps or shaving cream (body wash and water to substitute shaving cream works just  fine). I had originally been concerned that the file was frozen for medical investigation but turns out it was just pacing slowly.

Now the actual issue is sadly my shoulder which has me curious of the VOT during BMQ. RMS clerks won't be required to ruck, assemble generators and masts or other sig eqpt as well as do as much field work which my shoulder can't constantly do to the best of my ability.

I would be much more useful for my wage and money invested from the forces if I was able to serve on as many ex's and tours / courses as possible through a long military career if I was able to VOT but I am curious as to: How do I begin to action this / is it possible during BMQ and what is the process like in terms of waiting and where I will be placed? (new unit's PAT platoon or current unit and untrained until transfer)?

I just wanted a bit of knowledge before I submit a memo up my chain of command or speak to the receiving unit about openings etc (whatever I need to do first) so that I don't complicate things further than necessary

Thank you for your reply,
Again in brief; I should update my old thread if possible to inform others that if a medical is held for a long length of time due to history of contact dermatitus; it will take time, but come back OK.

I have dug deep into the forums and dark corners of the internet to solve most of my questions (or at least enough to build an understanding of what to do)

I will action a properly written memo for a remuster through my CoC and visit the receiving unit for knowledge on openings soonest to receive an interview. Fortunately I have good standing with both units and a reason backed with medical forms so fingers crossed all goes well since my PRes BMQ is nearly complete and PRes SQ is scheduled for spring (and will be completed too!). 

If I am lucky; it can be nearly instantaneous taking as little as 1 month to 12 months or if unlucky; not at all. From what I understand by my findings; my unit may allow me to be paid under same pay sheet, but will allow an agreement to get some OJT with the receiving unit until the remuster is complete. Otherwise, looks like I continue to parade as per usual but the key is to NOT GO NES (for those who may be looking for the same answers as I was)

Thank you to all who read my topic and to those who assisted me.
. . .  a reason backed with medical forms so fingers crossed all goes well since my PRes BMQ is nearly complete and PRes SQ is scheduled for spring (and will be completed too!). 

I think that you misunderstand how the military works (or at least how it should work).  You (nor your civilian doctors) get to decide if a medical condition is acceptable for continued military service or if you "can push through the courses" in order to get to a point where a change of jobs will be a lighter toll on your shoulder.  Only a CF medical authority can make that recommendation.  By the description of your injury (which you stated as not due to military service and did not occur during hours when you were in receipt of the Queen's schilling), you should probably have been given MELs that precluded you from continuing BMQ training.  But that is one of the problems inherent to reserve military service - there is no working system for medical surveillance of ill and injured part-time members.  The CF tends to rely on them being honest and above board.

While you may have informed your section commander (prior to commencing BMQ?) that you have a "shoulder injury" was he made aware of the full extent of the condition and has the military been made aware of any subsequent diagnosis (following further tests) including recommendations from your doctor that you cease an employment because of your condition.  If not, then they should be told.  There is a likelihood that you will be CT'ed from the course, but the question may be asked (when you submit your "medical reasons" for OT) why wasn't this dealt with sooner.

If I was still a CO of a reserve unit (and actually something similar did arise back in the stone age during my tenure as CO), I would require an updated medical category on anyone requesting an OT due to "medical reasons".
RMS clerks aren't required to ruck? Since when?  ???

I will action a properly written memo fl
If I am lucky; it can be nearly instantaneous taking as little as 1 month to 12 months or if unlucky; not at all.

Im very curious to where you got this timeline from, I personally know people who haved waited over a year to VOT (within the same unit, with spots available) as well as memebrs who have waited months for an attach posting (within the same brigade). Even members transferring units (while remaining in the same trade) took many months, if I recall correctly almost a year.

I wish you all the best in you venture but I think this will take  a lot longer than you think. While it is true that you could be attached posted while you vot it will still take time .
I've seen it happen quickly. Large recruit class, 2nd parade night of the year. "Anyone want Int Op, Sig O, supply tech? We have openings." Couple weeks later, they were OT'd. It's all about how much paperwork your CoC wants to do in relation to their needs in your new trade.
PMedMoe said:
RMS clerks aren't required to ruck? Since when?  ???

Damn - you mean I shouldn't have just thrown mine away ......

  Once the member identifies a possible medical issue, especially one documented by a civvie doc, the military MOs are supposed to be made aware, with supporting documentation if possible, and they will proceed with assessing the mbr.  In this case of an Occupation Reassignment due to medical reasons it will have to go to the MO to confirm he is med fit for the new trade.  When the mbr identified to his sect cmd he had a shoulder injury that person should have done some follow up as it obviously was a concern (otherwise why would the mbr mention it).

I think you need to look closer at what the clks will be doing also as RMS Clks do still ruck, go to ranges (and yes PWT3 is done by some of us), attend exercises, do rad op/cp, lug ammo (small cal up to shipboard), lug all supplies, etc as and when needed the same as everyone else. At some units clks are the Rad Op/Dvr for the HQs.

You also need to look at the new trade split that is to happen in 2016 - HR Admin and FS Fin rather than looking at RMS Clk.

With the shoulder injury it is certainly better to be clk than cbt arms but I do wonder about the total lost of strength in the arm and whether that will allow for meeting UoS.  I have two bum shoulders that have not stopped me so it can be done.

Got to ask - why is your unit not keeping you as a clerk?  Clerks are a commodity in demand everywhere so I really don't understand why you would be going to another unit.
The VOT typically requires processing via the Bde PSO does it not?

In my case, that was the delaying factor. The unit processed the paperwork fairly quickly, but the Bde was down to one part-time PSO and a backlog of about 9 months... I was fortunate enough to get floated to the top when they took on a new PSO and from the interview to the change showing up on my MPRR was about two more months.

For the OP's reference, the process I followed (in 33 CBG) was as follows:

1. Sent the memo up my CoC.
2. Was requested to (and obtained) an updated medical from a CF Med O.
3. Package was sent of to Bde PSO.
4. PSO reviews, may request other testing.
5. Interview conducted by the PSO.
6. PSO reviews file, makes a recommendation and sends to the approving authority.
7. File is returned to unit CO for finalization.


Thank you for the prompt replies and assistance. In regards as to why I did not OT to a clerk within my unit; the OR is 150km+ from my home location, so I unfortunately did not have the flexibility for travel time due to my civilian employment to make parades regularly.

I have, since the original post, completed my BMQ and BMQL with an injury and just trooped it out by suffering in silence on course (still did ALL the PT too) and now onto DP1. Fortunately I was able to sort it out with some corticosteroid injections as per the 'doc, and with a little physio and strength training, all seems to be better.

Thank you once again for your help and support.