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Medical Department

During a major exercise or indeed a real world conflict a surgical support team will be embarked in HMS Ark Royal. A general surgeon, anaesthetist and a second theatre technician will sail with the ship for the duration.  They have the ability to provide life saving emergency surgery to personnel who are brought to the ship either by helicopter or sea boat. The sick bay is equipped with a resuscitation room, fully functional operating theatre and an 8 bed ward where personnel can be admitted for further or additional care.
Dental treatment is provided in the ships dedicated dental surgery which is fully equipped with an X-Ray machine and processing facility, and a dental laboratory.  A portable dental surgery and associated equipment is also carried on board to allow the dental team to deploy either to support a shore contingent, or cross deck to another ship which requires urgent dental care. Emergencies on board will be seen at any time day or night and appointments are made 7 days a week when the ship is at sea.
Daily routine medical care is provided in a similar manner to that of general practices ashore by way of fresh cases which are seen twice a day by the Medical Assistants and consultation with the Medical Officer is by appointment or referral only. Whilst the ship is at sea the medical team are on call 24 hours a day to respond to any form of incident.  This may include falls, fires, drowning, immersion or trauma cases. Regular exercises take place in order to simulate such incidents in order to allow the medics to practice their skills and train other members of the ships company to assist them in case of a real emergency.

HMS Ark Royal Medical departmentHMS Ark Royal Medical department HMS Ark Royal Medical department is headed by the ships Principal Medical Officer Surgeon Commander N Imm (General Practitioner), the Deputy Head of Department is Surgeon Lieutenant Commander (D) S Hamilton the ships Dental Officer.

The objectives of the Medical Department are to provide the Captain with necessary medical advice and support in order to maintain the health and well being of the ship’s company and embarked forces in peace and war. If required, it is also to be capable of rendering medical assistance to external agencies.

The provision of Primary Medical and Dental care, Aviation Medicine, Environmental Health and Travel Medicine advice together with First Aid support to onboard incidents will be managed at all times. 

The Medical Department is also known as the sickbay and comprises 8 other members of medically trained staff.  This includes: Chief Petty Officer Medical Assistant (CPOMA) who is the practice manager, Petty Officer Medical Assistant (POMA) who in addition to managing the pharmacy, is a theatre technician, Petty Officer Medical Technician (POMT) who is responsible for laboratory work including, blood tests, microscopy and cultures.  They work alongside the Leading Medical Assistant (LMA), 3 Medical Assistants (MA) and the Leading Dental Surgery Assistant (LDSA) in order to provide excellent medical and dental care for the ships company.