Medic carrying ‘wounded’ soldier during training maneuvers

Testing for the Expert Field Medical Badge

United States Army medics who see combat action on the front line, in the midst of battle, have been eligible to earn the Combat Medical Badge since 1945. In June 1965, the US Army expanded its awards program by implementing the Expert Field Medical Badge (EFMB) for combat medics who do not see battle.

Rigorous testing in the classroom and in performance exercises qualify the military medic from both the US Army and the US Air Force to earn the EFMB. While not actual combat duty, the test itself is so difficult that only 15.3% of those who tried it passed it in 2008. The EFMB is considered one of the most prestigious Army skill badges of all.

Applicants must have cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) certification to take the test. They must also have passed the Army Physical Fitness Test and the M16 or M4 Weapons Qualifications within 12 months of test application.

Here’s a part, but not all, of what an applicant will face:

60 multiple-choice questions in general military and medical knowledge, preventive medicine, and map reading. A score of 75% or higher is required.

Land Navigation in both day and night

Twelve-Mile Forced Road March must be completed within three hours of starting it and the medic applicant must carry a standard load of fighting gear.

Tactical Combat Casualty Care Tasks

Medical and Casualty Evacuation Tasks

Warrior Skills Tasks

Five Communications Tasks

It’s possible for an Army medic to earn both the Expert Field Medical Badge and the Combat Medical Badge. The two badges cannot both be worn at the same time, however, according to Army regulations, with the Combat Medical Badge taking precedence over the EFMB.

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