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ATTN: Doug Santillo RE: Annapolis Naval Medical Clinic

Hey, Doug, I understand from the forum that you’re a recent Naval Academy grad. I’m a med student with an opportunity to do a rotation in Sports Medicine at Naval Medical Clinic Annapolis. I’m trying to dig up some information on the place before I commit. Are you familiar with the facility and/or staff? If so, what’s your opinion? Is it a good place to learn sports medicine and possibly network? If not can you suggest any other good sites around the country for Naval sports medicine? Anyone else with an opinion is free to chime in as well.

I can’t really give you too much feedback on the sports medicine part of the naval clinic, but from what I’ve seen I’m not too impressed. They aren’t very progressive in their treatment as far as I can tell, don’t have any knowledge of active release or soft tissue therapy (i’ve asked), and generally treat injuries in the typical, mainstream fashion of lots of ibuprofen and time off. I wouldn’t give a lot of weight to my opinion though, because most of the exposure I’ve had to sports medicine has been in the football training room.

What's your background? I'm not sure if you're interested, but the Navy has an outstanding Physical Therapy program. It's an 18 month long school I think (as opposed to 3 years civilian), and you'll have your residency and a lot of experience by the time you get out. I can probably dig up some more details if you're interested.

Thanks Doug. That’s just the type of feedback I was looking for. I’d love to work with an MD who utilizes soft tissue therapy, but it’s tough to find progressive docs anywhere, let alone in the Navy. As far as my background, I’m in my 3rd year of med school and on Naval Scholarship. I’m planning a couple of my school rotations with the Navy, since that’s where I’ll be for several years after graduation. The Annapolis NMC is one of the few places (also San Diego and Camp Pendleton) that offers a Sports Med rotation to students, so I thought I’d look into it. I figured most of the patients would be college athletes, which would be a nice change of pace from the grumpy 70 yr old COPD, diabetic, heart-diseased patients I’m working with this month at the local VA hospital…BORING! Anyway, thanks for your input. It’s nice to get the perspective of a fellow T-magger. Any other advice would be appreciated.

I don’t know if this is even an option for you, but I’d look into seeing if I can work with Dr. Fare, who works in Ricketts Hall at the Naval Academy. He works exclusively with varsity athletes (mostly football players) and interacts a lot with the MDs at the Naval Clinic. I don’t know if they’d let you work only with him and his athletes, but it’s definitely worth looking into. Let me know how it goes or if there’s anything else I can do to help.

I will definitely look into working with Dr. Fare. Thanks again, Doug. I’ll keep you posted.