Medics are responsible for the comprehensive medical care of all naval personnel both ashore and at sea. You will perform a variety of duties including treating sick and injured personnel, immunisations, out-patient clinics, training new medics and other sailors, ensuring the Ship’s Company has regular health checks and maintaining health records.

If not posted to sea and not on operational deployment most Medics are posted to the Naval Health Unit.  When deployed on Land Operations you usually work in small teams providing high quality medical care to a contingent of Defence Force personnel. At times you may work as part of a larger medical response team working alongside other health specialists. Whatever the situation, you will be well equipped (trained) to adapt to your operational environment.

When at sea, you may find yourself operating as an independent health provider in remote locations. You are responsible for medical operations on board and therefore the health and wellness of all personnel on board to ensure the ongoing functionality and operational readiness of the ships crew.

Throughout your career you will have continuous opportunities to expand your knowledge and experience, and to remain current as a medical professional. 

On completion of your training you will be posted both ashore to work in the Naval Health Unit at the Devonport naval base and for periods of time at sea. Opportunities exist for medics to deploy on international peacekeeping missions providing medical support to NZDF personnel and its allies. Medics are amongst the most frequently deployed trades within the Defence Force and are often called upon at short notice to assist in disasters and emergencies. As a consequence it is important that medics have a good standard of fitness in order to be fit to deploy at any time.

Careers in the Navy are well-rewarded, as well as being diverse and exciting. As you become more experienced and move up the ranks, gaining additional skills, you will see your salary rise accordingly.

While undertaking Basic Recruit Course you will be paid as a Recruit (see attached pay table). On completion of your Recruit Course you will be paid as an Ordinary Rate and your pay will continue to increase as your career progresses.

  • You must be at least 17 years of age.
  • Meet the citizenship & security requirements to gain CV security clearance for this trade.
  • You must be free of any criminal convictions.

You must have achieved NCEA level 2 with a minimum of 12 credits in a level 2 Science (excluding Physics).

Find out more about the NCEA levels and certificate requirements

  • You must be medically fit for service.
  • Colour perception restrictions may apply.

Upon successful enlistment into the Navy you’ll be posted to Devonport Navy base in Auckland. Here you will do complete your basic training. Find out more about basic training.

Medic training for all three services (Navy, Air Force and Army) is conducted at the Defence Health School (DHS) in Burnham.  This training consists of formal training at DHS before being sent out on clinical placements (On the Job Experience) to various camps and bases within the NZDF to gain experience.  The total duration of this training is 2 and a half years, with 40 weeks of which is clinical placements.

Further Navy training will be provided throughout your career in both areas of medicine and leadership skills.

Once you graduate from the Defence Health School, you will be posted into a deployable unit based in camps and bases around the country.  Once you have gained sufficient experience, you could be posted to the medical cell of the NZSAS or even back to the Defence Health School as an instructor.