“The uniform has become part of the identity of the U.S. Public Health Service – it allows us to stand out as the only uniformed service in the world dedicated to a public health mission, reassures our Nation that the mission is in the hands of a professional and dedicated service, and honors the legacy and history of the Corps.”
- RADM Boris D. Lushniak, MD, MPH
Deputy Surgeon General
U.S. Public Health Service
Few things inspire pride and esprit-de-corps more than the U.S. Public Health Service (PHS) uniform. By wearing the uniform, Commissioned Corps officers display a profound respect for their country, their service, and themselves. Uniforms promote the visibility and credibility of the Commissioned Corps to the general public and the Nation’s underserved populations whom officers are devoted to serving.
The PHS uniform traces its roots back to 1871 when John Maynard Woodworth, the first supervising surgeon (now known as the Surgeon General), organized the service along military lines. The uniforms reflect the proud legacy and tradition of the more than 200-year-old service. Uniforms link today’s officers to their heritage and connect them to past officers. Since they represent the Commissioned Corps history and tradition, rigorous standards apply to wearing the uniform and every officer upholds those standards with pride.
Similar to the other services, the Commissioned Corps has several uniforms including the Service Dress Blues, Summer Whites, Service Khakis, and Operational Dress Uniform (ODU) Woodland Camouflage. Each uniform reflects the great responsibility and privilege that comes with being a commissioned officer.
View how the ranks and grades of the Commissioned Corps [PDF 1.5 MB] compare to the other six uniformed services of the United States.
*Pictured: Service Dress Blues (left), Service Khakis (top right), Dress Whites (bottom left)
Page Last Modified on 8/28/2015
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