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Become a Public Health Emergency Response Strike Team (PHERST) Officer

The U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps deploys in support of numerous natural disasters and public health emergencies to provide essential clinical care to those in need, as well as ensure sustainable health-care service delivery. The Public Health Emergency Response Strike Team (PHERST) is comprised of active duty Public Health Service officers who rapidly deploy as first responders to regional, national, and global public health emergencies.

USPHS Officers Picture

“PHERST is a unique clinical and safety asset that balances regular active duty with speed, agility, and deployment precision required to strengthen USPHS Commissioned Corps’ capacity to forge ahead innovatively in its response to pressing public health threats while creating history.”

PHERST provides the capability to surge during national emergencies and public health crises, providing trained and ready personnel to fill critical public health needs and will:

Be First to Respond

Active duty officers who are “first on the ground.” PHERST is available to deploy immediately (within 24 hours) at the request of the President, the Secretary of Health, the Assistant Secretary for Health, or the Surgeon General.

Preserve Care Positions

When not deployed, PHERST officers train, maintain skills, and fill short-term staffing in agencies.

Be Clinically Prepared

Offer advanced clinical competencies and innovative techniques required for community stabilization.

When public health emergencies arise, USPHS Commissioned Corps leverages active duty and reserve corps officers to lead and support public health missions. Combining active duty PHERST and Regular Corps with the Ready Reserve Corps allows the Public Health Service to respond rapidly and effectively.

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