U.S. Navy Announces Deployability Assessment and Assignment Program

U.S. Navy Sailors aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) man the rails as the ship departs its homeport of San Diego. The Carl Vinson Strike Group is operating in the Pacific as part of a regularly scheduled deployment. (U.S. Navy Photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Apprentice Eleanor D. Vara/Released)

In an effort to maximize warfighting effectiveness and lethality across the force, Navy announced implementation of its Deployability Assessment and Assignment Program in NAVADMIN 239/18, released Sept. 25.

The program will ensure the timely disposition, processing, and accountability of all Active Component, Full Time Support, and Selected Reserve Sailors who are either medically, legally or administratively limited from deployment.  The Deputy Chief of Naval Personnel (DCNP) is the single process owner of the program.

“The Navy the Nation Needs is a talented, ready and lethal active and reserve force, and we need deployment-ready Sailors to accomplish the mission,” said Rear Adm. Jeff Hughes, DCNP. “While command leadership is responsible for overall personnel readiness, our Sailors bear the ultimate responsibility for their individual readiness and deployability status, and this new program is designed to help our force successfully achieve both goals.”

 Starting October 1, 2018, Sailors who have been non-deployable for 12 consecutive months will be notified of mandatory processing for administrative separation or referral to the Disability Evaluation System (DES), as appropriate.  The policy applies to all Sailors, regardless of current duty type (operational or non-operational).

Military treatment facilities and Sailors’ commands will make deployability assessments by determining a Sailor’s ability to perform appropriate military duties commensurate with his or her office, grade, rank, or skill in light of ongoing medical treatment or administrative limitations.

Commands will use written counseling and performance evaluations to document a Sailor’s knowing failure to comply with responsibilities to maintain individual readiness (e.g., missing medical or dental appointments or intentional failure to disclose status affecting deployability).  Sailors who fail to comply with this policy could ultimately receive administrative separation.

“Sailors who receive notifications will have the opportunity to be considered for retention by the Secretary of the Navy,” said Capt. Chris Harris, director, distribution management division, career management department, Navy Personnel Command.  “All retention determinations will be made on a case-by-case basis.”

Retention may be granted if determined to be in the best interest of the Navy.  A Sailor who is unable to deploy for administrative reasons must personally submit a retention request.  A medical evaluation board may recommend retention on behalf of a Sailor who is unable to deploy for medical reasons, if it is likely that the Sailor’s medical condition will ultimately permit a return to a deployable status.

The Navy Bureau of Medicine and Surgery is proactively realigning resources and focus to support Sailor readiness and deployability, especially in Fleet concentration areas. However, in some cases, Sailors must be referred to civilian medical networks for follow-on referrals or appointments. Navy leadership is cognizant of the delays outside of the control of individual Sailors and this factor will be considered in the retention determination process.

Pregnant and post-partum Sailors are exempt from this policy.  No other Sailors are exempt, but special categories for retention consideration include combat wounded members, Sailors who will be non-deployable for 12 months or longer due to administrative reasons, and Sailors who have attained such years of creditable service so as to be within three years of qualifying for retirement.

This policy supports Defense Secretary Mattis’ guidance to maximize the lethality and readiness of the joint force, and the release of DoD Instruction 1332.45.

More information on deployability can be found at the following websites:

http://www.public.navy.mil/bupers-npc/career/LIMDU/Pages/default.aspx

https://www.med.navy.mil/sites/nmcp/Branch/SitePages/Norfolk/DeploymentHealth.aspx

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