royal navy pilot.

Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by pilot1, Oct 23, 2010.

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  1. Hi People,

    Having asked this question on other internet chat sites, I was forewarded here.

    OK, straight to the point.

    I have a diagnosis of Asperger's, would the royal navy allow me in? Do they look at this black and white or do they deal with people on a case by case basis? My GP and a another person I know (who has worked with people with Asperger's for over 30 years and has studied it at postgrad' level) said they are willing to write to the AFCO if it is a problem to inform them that their professional opinion is that Asperger's wouldn't cause a problem in my case, how would the navy respond to this if it happened?

    Thanks in advance.
  2. I believe it's a bar to entry, however Angrydoc who is an RN Doctor will know the exact answer.

    Your GP and another person won't make a difference. The standards are that, standards. Just because someone thinks it won't effect the entry doesn't mean they know the standards and the reasons behind the standards. They are there for a reason.
  3. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    Again angrydoc is the man to give an answer but the thing to bear in mind is that aircrew are the most costly of individuals in the service to train after joining.

    To this end the most stringent medical standards apply - in short we have more applicants than jobs available for those with no known medical conditions & even then we reckon that from every 12,000 people that bimble into an AFCO, we can expect one pilot.

    Best of luck.
  4. Good morning.

    Asperger's is usually a bar to entry from a medical point of view. The slight complication is that the diagnosis is usually handed out relatively easily for what could be interpreted as "normal male behaviour", in my opinion. If you flick through my medical posts on RR you'll see that I'm very against the medicalization of normal human behaviour.

    The problem is that once someone becomes labelled, it is very hard to disprove the diagnosis.

    The caveat on my Asperger's statement is that the original diagnosis may not be sound. However, in your case, you state you have been seen by relatively knowledgable people. This means the diagnosis is probably fairly firm.

    Whilst one may think that the intevention of your friend and GP stating you could function in the Armed Forces would be useful, I am afraid it would be two meaningless pieces of paper. The opinion of a civilian, untrained in Naval and Military medical matters, on the suitability for Service of an individual is not worth much. The RN has GPs, psychiatrists and occupational physicians who are trained not only in the medical side (to the same standard as civilian life) but also in the Naval and Military aspects. Whilst you may function well in civilian life, when you're dumped in a 50-man mess deck at BRNC and have to do things very differently to your normal routine then there may well be issues. A civilian would have no idea what you would have to undergo in basic training, or further training, and that is why we don't really need their opinion - no matter how high-powered or well-intentioned.

    You cannot be "undiagnosed" - there will always be something on your medical records. I am sure I do not need to remind you that making a fraudulent declaration in your application form constitutes an offence and would not be terribly well looked upon by the RN manning authorities.

    If you want to join the RN then apply. Otherwise you always ask yourself "what if...". However, you should understand that your condition is very likely to cause significant issues.

    RN Medical Officer
  5. Ninja you should make that a sticky post under the heading "What are my chances of becoming a FAA pilot?"
    Then those mentioning aspergers, autism, asthma, allergies and advanced bedwetting could be automatically refered to it without you or Angry Doc having to count to ten before replying. :wink:
  6. Hi,
    Thanks for thr reply, and the PM.

    When I was diagnosed, I saw one phychologist who diagnosed me in an hour appointment. If I apply and it does cause a problem could I see a navy psychologist who could rectify any issues?
    It really doesn't cause a problem in my life, academically or socially.

    Thanks again.
  7. The RN will not provide a service to those who are not in the RN!

    I think you're missing my point. Your initial post suggests you, your GP and your postgraduate friend are all convinced you have Asperger's. You are now suggesting the diagnosis could be easily reversed. You can't have it both ways.
  8. No, that is not what my initial post suggests. What I said was that although I have the diagnosis it has minimal 9if any) impact on my life and that my GP and the other person I mentioned will support my application because they agree with me.

    Also, I have just got back from my AFCO visit and I have been told that people with Asperger's can go into the Royal Navy depending on how much it effects them. The guy said he has has applicants with Asperger's go into the service before. I think alot of people get confused with Severe autism and Asperger's, which is why my GP and 'friend' said they would write to the RN if necessary (which my AFCO said would be fine). Also if the medic is unsure they are surposed to write to my GP anyway.

    Thanks for your help.
  9. FlagWagger

    FlagWagger Book Reviewer

    If you have a quick look at angrydoc's posts you'll find that he is a qualified doctor within the naval medical community - your words above (highlighted in red) seem to indicate that you, a person not yet in the RN and not a medical professional, are lecturing angrydoc, a current medical professional within the RN, on a medical subject. User names on this site may convey a degree of anonymity, but it wouldn't take a rocket scientist to work out someone's real identity. As you're currently trying to join the RN, and are looking for a degree of special treatment, don't rock the boat!

    This question has arisen before on this site - the RN rules on medical circumstances are quite strict for a reason. Reading angrydoc's original post he says that in general Aspergers is a bar to entry - obviously, generalisations may have exceptions but don't get your hopes up too high!
  10. Further to Flagwagger's last, AFAIK, Aspergers is not a diagnosis which is made any more in the UK, instead people are diagnosed with Autistic Spectrum Disorder. This is because Aspergers Syndrome is Autism by another name.
  11. Hi,

    I'm not 'rocking the boat' purposefully, however I am just telling angrydoc what my AFCO told me. Sorry if it came across in the incorrect manner.

    It isn't correct to say that Asperger's is "autism with another name".
    The purpose of the phrase autistic spectrum 'disorder' is because it really is a spectrum. On one end you have people in a wheel chair, in the middle you have 'classic autism' which is the stereotypical image the public has of autism - poor social skills etc. At the other end is 'high functioning autism' and on the very extreme end, further than HFA, is AS. Despite the diagnostic criteria for AS, people make the assumption alot of the time that everyone with that label is the same when it simply isn't true. There are people that lock themselves away etc but there are people like me who actually really enjoy socialising (which is one of the reasons I want to join the RN - because of the lifestyle that comes with it). My diagnosis was given after an hour consultation with a psychologist and as any health professional will know, a diagnosis is usually given after years of observation of the individual, and by a highly qualified team of people. Therefore you will understand that there are questions relating to the diagnosis both in terms of how it was given and if it applies to me (which as I've hinted at already, is unlikely).

    Thankyou all once again for your time and advice.
  12. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    My advice to the parents of potential joiners is that if they go looking for a label for their child's behaviour or indeed if the individual seeks medical recognition of their circumstances, then they very often reap what is sown in the long term & the glue on the label takes a lot of shifting when it's no longer a social or financial advantage to use it as an excuse.
  13. After the answers you have heard there is no more to be gained here, an unofficial site.

    Please return and let us know what your application results in, purely "pour l'encouragement des autres"
  14. Brilliant post I wish that was handed to every new parent. Everyone now a days seems to blame everything else but themselves for their own actions and problems.
  15. This is a useful post, however not applicable to myself or my family.
  16. This has all the makings of a good tale, if the truth were to be told.

    The trouble is, it seldom is........ :cry:
  17. What happens now, then?
  18. Something like this.
    Pilot1 ( :roll: ) applies to join.
    Gets medicalised fails due to above.
    Appeals and bleats about it on here.
    Appeal denied.
    :cry: :cry: :cry:
  19. FlagWagger

    FlagWagger Book Reviewer

    Have a look back over your posts on this thread and try and read them from others' points of view. Sorry to say this, but you really do come over as an ego-centric little pr!ck! You ask a question on an unoffical board, receive answers from people involved in the AFCO and the RN Medical communities, and since you don't like the answers you determine that they don't apply to you. You may have all the necessary arrogance to be a pilot, but you seem to be lacking an ability to listen to the opinions of others and to learn from those with far more experience than you - if you get past the medical board, you're going to have to prove to the AIB that you have the necessary people skills to be an effective officer, which on current performance may be the harder battle - you seem to be suffering from terminal procto-heliosis for which there is no easy cure.
  20. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    There was no inference it was applicable to yourself as the advice is generic.

    However, what may be applicable to the individual is that if they claim Disability Living Allowance (£18-£71 per week) or Employment Supprt Allowance (£51 per week) as a direct result of being diagnosed with Aspergers, or indeed if their parents claim Carers Allowance (£53 per week) due to the diagnosis, then they can hardly also claim to be fit to be a Pilot in the Armed Forces as well.

    Doubtless this is not applicable to yourself, however, the advice is generic, as stated.
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