I have just recieved a letter saying that I haven't passed the medical after a wait of 3 months. I have had ACL surgery on my knee and this is why they declined me. Can anyone give me an idea of how long an appeal against this decision would take and if there is a chance that the decision would get reversed if I can give INM letters from my physio, GP and consultant stating that my knee has fully healed.


When i first went for my medical i was declared temp medical unfit for 2 months ( this was in april) the letter states that they can't offer me a vacancy because of this. I will appeal this as I'm back playing rugby and water polo and I feel I haven't bveen given a fair chance to prove that I am fit enough!
Hi Robbie,

You can only appeal if you believe you have new information that could make a difference to the opinion that the senior medical officer has made on your case. When the senior medical officer makes his decision it is based upon the information he has been given and the required potential levels of physical/medical fitness for a future career within the Royal Navy.

Obviously I can't second guess his decision, but I would guess they have gathered information on personal who have joined with your previous medical history and are potentially worried about the future treatment you may need.

Best of luck for the future




In your proffesional opinion then, do you think I should appeal? Have you as an AFCO had anyone appeal a decision and what was the outcomes ?


War Hero
The medical standards for entry, as usually explained in the letter from the Medical examiner, have been developed over many years & take into consideration the rigours of training & the job beyond in extremes of climate & under the most exacting of circumstances.

Unless an individual either did not suffer friom the condition or did not have the surgery described, there is unfortunately nothing to appeal against because the standards are not open to negotiation unfortunately, as indicated by Supermario.

Whilst it is extremely disappointing for the individual, there is little to be gained by appealing simply because it is felt that the decision is unfair. My sympathy to you, but it is indicated in the Application Form & Information & Guidance Booklet (AFCO Form 5) issued from the outset, that this particular condition is a bar to entry, particularly for any trade that routinely has extreme physical demands.


Robbie - sorry to hear this.

As Ninja say, though, it's tricky to appeal as you are appealing against a set standard. In fairness, the guidelines state that previous ACL repair will usually be unacceptable - there are exceptions but these are exceptions and not the rule.

Your case has already been referred to the experts on this at the Institute of Naval Medicine (INM) - no amount of letters from well meaning civilians (like your GP or surgeon) will change this. As I have stated on many occasions, the opinion of a civilian untrained in military standards on medical suitability for service is not worth the paper it is written on.

It's bad news, and not what you wanted, but appealing is unlikely to be fruitful.