Foreign Service Regional Medical Officer

Montevideo, D.C
Oct 15, 2021
Oct 19, 2021
Full Time


The U.S. Department of State is developing a rank-order list of eligible hires for a limited number of Foreign Service Regional Medical Officer (RMO) vacancies. To learn more about the Department of State and a career in the Foreign Service, visit .

Joining the Foreign Service is more than just salary . RMOs may be eligible for a Physician's Comparability Allowance up to $30,000. Refer to the Benefits section and visit for more information.

Learn more about this agency


A Regional Medical Officer (RMO) works either independently or as a member of a team of FS Medical Specialists to provide medical support for USG employees and their eligible family members (EFMs).

An RMO is considered "essential personnel" and is expected to be available on-call 24 hours a day, seven days a week. RMOs duties may include, but are not limited to:

Clinical Responsibilities
  • Provides direct primary and preventive healthcare for pediatric, obstetric, and adult patients, including emergency and acute care services.
  • Performs patient histories and physical examinations.
  • Orders and analyses diagnostic tests.
  • Prescribes medications.
  • Performs therapeutic procedures within the scope of primary and emergency care.
  • Administers routine, seasonal, travel, and service-related vaccines.
  • Coordinates telemedicine consultations. Coordinates inpatient care and monitoring of patients hospitalized in region.
  • Provides/oversees occupational health services for all staff members.
  • Acts as patient advocate when needed.
  • Arranges 24-hour care when necessary.
  • Manages infectious disease risks, especially malaria and other tropical diseases.
  • Advises on disease prevention, especially regional diseases.
  • Responds to allegations of abuse.
  • Perform sexual assault examinations.
  • Serves as forensics subject matter expert in case of death.
  • Collaborates with the regional medical officer/psychiatrist (these are psychiatrists also employed by DOS).
  • Ensures safe blood supply for critical care/trauma management.
  • Teaches basic life support.
  • Reviews local pharmacies, pharmaceutical manufacturers, doctors, laboratories, and hospitals.
  • Provides occupational health care.
  • Promotes healthy adjustment to lifestyle and culture for Diplomats and family members.
  • Establishes wellness and lifestyle programs.
  • Maintains personal credentials, licensure, and continuing medical education.
  • Reports adverse actions, claims, or licensure issues to the governing office within the Department (Office of Quality Management).
  • Capable of assessing and caring for all people equitably without regard to ableness, gender, sexual orientation, race, or other potential biases in order to provide the same standard of care to all patients.

Administrative Responsibilities

  • Maintains and preserves appropriate medical documentation, including full use of electronic health records and other systems.
  • Maintains scrupulous attention to privacy and confidentiality. Supervises and supports regional health unit professionals.
  • Hires, manages, and supervises local employees.
  • Maintains an inventory of supplies, including overseeing controlled substances.
  • Communicates regularly with Embassy/Consulate community and its leadership.
  • Ensures universal precautions and all OSHA required lab standards.
  • Provides consultation to other medical staff.
  • Develops training programs for health unit staff and other Embassy/Consulate staff members as required.
  • Sets budget priorities.
  • Ensures food and water safety; including facility inspections when indicated.

Coordinating Emergency Medical Response
  • Provides medical leadership in crises.
  • Provides emergency medical care.
  • Advises post leadership in crises.
  • Coordinates Embassy/Consulate's epidemic medical response.
  • Serves on emergency action committee.
  • Updates the emergency action plan.
  • Ensures emergency preparedness.

Embassy or State Department Specific Responsibilities

  • Arranges medical evacuations and oversees care for patients awaiting evacuation.
  • Liaises with other regional medical officers and with local and international experts to support patient care.
  • Performs regional travel to support other Consulates/Embassies.
  • Advises ambassador on medical matters.
  • Supports all Embassy/Consulate occupational safety efforts including supporting the Post Safety and Health Officer (POSHO) in the Facilities office with regard to reporting of adverse occurrences.
  • Communicates with medical headquarters in Washington.
  • Participates in medical clearance decisions.
  • Interfaces with local healthcare officials.
  • Serves on "country team" as medical expert.
  • Acts as a diplomat.
  • Organizes medical representational events.
  • Ensures health-unit security.

Travel Required

50% or less - Foreign Service Specialists generally spend the majority of their career assigned to our overseas missions and at times, live away from family and/or in difficult or isolated conditions. Selected applicants will be notified of an Oral Assessment (OA) requirement in Washington D.C. All travel and other expenses incurred in connection with the OA are the sole responsibility of the applicant.

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


Conditions of Employment

  • Be a U.S. citizen and available for worldwide service.*
  • Be able to obtain a Top Secret Security Clearance.
  • Be able to obtain an appropriate Foreign Service Medical Clearance.
  • Be able to obtain a favorable Suitability Review Panel determination.**
  • Be at least 20 years old and at least 21 years old to be appointed.
  • Be appointed prior to age 60 (preference eligible veterans excepted).***

The Bureau of Medical Services (MED) in the Department of State safeguards and promotes the health and well-being of American's diplomatic community, which consists of employees and their accompanying family members who represent United States government agencies abroad. The Department assigns Foreign Service Medical Officers (RMOs), Psychiatrists (RMO/Ps), Medical Providers (MPs), and Medical Laboratory Scientists (RMLS) to selected posts overseas. Many of these posts have significant health risks and local medical care that is inadequate by U.S. standards.

Essential Physical Requirements

The most important physical requirements of the job are: speaking, hearing, vision, mental endurance, tolerance for extreme environmental conditions, physical endurance, dexterity, and mobility.

RMOs may need to perform essential functions effectively in environments that pose physical or other occupational challenges. These duties may include:
  • Provision of direct patient care that may require heavy lifting, pulling, stooping, bending and twisting in tight and limited spaces.
  • Travelling independently to posts utilizing commercial air carriers, military aircraft, or other transportation types that may not offer special access or accommodations.
  • Provision of emergency care in any location following an accident, natural disaster, or attack in potentially hostile or physically challenging environments, such as in buildings without elevators or in areas with irregular spaces that require kneeling, bending, stooping, lifting, walking and running over uneven terrain.
  • Transportation of self or patients via small aircraft, helicopters, ambulances, or other non-standard modes of transportation with small entrances and high floors, such as high axle armored vehicles.


Licensure and Board Certification

Applicants must be currently board certified in Family Practice (preferred) or Internal Medicine or Emergency Medicine (accepted) by the American Board of Medical Specialties or Osteopathic Board. American Board certification and re-certification, state medical licensure, and Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) registration must be maintained for the duration of employment.

Specialized Experience

Applicants must have a minimum of five (5) years of full-time post-residency clinical experience within the past seven (7) years, in providing primary care to adults, children, and infants, with at least 75% of the time involved in direct patient care. Otherwise qualified clinicians who have practiced primarily emergency medicine, hospital based practice or other non-ambulatory settings must demonstrate thorough understanding of primary care practice fundamentals as defined in the next paragraph.

"Primary care" encompasses adult and pediatric diagnosis and treatment of acute illness and management of chronic diseases, routine gynecologic care, prenatal care, adult health maintenance and preventive health care, well child care and immunization management. It embraces the total family unit across the lifespan, including emotional and physical aspects that impact overall well-being. The primary care physician utilizes and coordinates sub-specialty professional consultations when needed.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities (KSA)

The Department has conducted extensive job analysis research to determine KSAs and other attributes conducive to successful performance as an RMO. An applicant's education level, work experience, and other qualifications will be considered as part of the hiring decision-making process based on these KSA criteria.

Applicants must have demonstrated a high degree of clinical and management expertise. The patient population covered is unique because of background and lifestyle as part of a diplomatic community overseas. This population also differs in terms of clinical and administrative needs and the national security concerns inherent in their employment. Previous experience working in an occupational setting and/or in an overseas setting is advantageous.

The candidate must demonstrate the ability to manage administrative aspects of an HU as well as the ability to cope with extraordinary medical crises, often in remote and isolated settings. Education and experience must demonstrate that the applicant can function as a public/community health provider.

The applicant must be a skilled and experienced primary health care practitioner with excellent interpersonal skills. The applicant must be able to function well within a complex organization and have experience working in a high stress environment. They can also recognize and understand the problems of delivering healthcare to Americans posted in locations where local medical resources are limited or non-existent. The ability to logically and objectively analyze patient problems, and apply sound clinical judgment is required. Experience in providing long distance triage and care via electronic communications such as telephone, telemedicine, radio, and e-mail is preferred.

Applicants must have the capacity to gain the cooperation and confidence of patients, co-workers, supervisors, and subordinates. Individuals must have experience working in a multidisciplinary practice as well as experience in team building, leadership, and management. Effective written and oral communication skills are essential, as well as the ability to present medical findings in a clear and concise manner to medical and non-medical personnel. Demonstrated ability to teach or lecture to groups on medical issues is preferred.

Applicants must be able to develop, coordinate, and administer health care delivery programs. These include but are not limited to individual and community health promotion and disease prevention programs to include teaching health topics to both small and large groups. Applicants must provide comprehensive health assessments and medical care to individuals and families across the lifespan.

Applicants must be able to organize and supervise a diverse group of health care providers with varying degrees of expertise, education, and command of English. Applicants must understand the unique cultural differences related to health care delivery in varied countries and address these differences in a positive manner. Applicants must be able to assess, diagnose, and treat infectious diseases within the scope of primary care.

Applicants must possess a high degree of integrity, decisiveness and fairness in order to equitably apply the regulations and policies of the medical program to all eligible persons.

Knowledge and hands-on familiarity with computer systems are preferred.

Specific medical knowledge areas required for successful job performance include: pediatrics, orthopedics, vaccines, infectious diseases, gynecology, gastroenterology, dermatology, emergency techniques, clinical pharmacology, laboratory medicine, obstetrics, general surgery, psychiatry, health-related environmental factors, alcoholism and drug abuse, pulmonology, urology, radiology, otorhinolaryngology, occupational medicine, food and water safety, epidemiology, air quality, health insurance, and medical information resources.

Specific medical skills required by the job include: medical history-taking, physical examination, planning of evaluation and treatment, electrocardiography, operating medical equipment, minor surgery, triage, intravenous access, medical communication, data interpretation, research techniques, and medical software use.

Management skills required by the job include: staff supervision, training and development of employees, mentoring, time management, management of personnel, financial, and other resources, including working with limited resources, and managing a diverse staff in terms of cultures, backgrounds, and skills.

Personal skills required by the job include: reading comprehension, active listening, active learning, oral and written communication, public speaking, complex problem identification, critical thinking, judgment and decision making, social perceptiveness, interpersonal skills, giving critical feedback, persuasion, service orientation, monitoring, coordination, and process operation and control.

Other attributes required by the job include: compassionate, unflappable, self-confident, firm convictions, independent but integrated with the department, interest in continuous learning and change, interest in foreign service work, tolerance of on-call and emergency demands, tolerance of travel, worldwide available, and tolerance of living away from family.

Further desirable attributes include a willingness to deploy to high threat environments to provide care and consultation to USG employees and EFMs, ability to consult with senior leaders, officials, and EFMs with tact. Recognizing the limited role of the physician in a non-medical organizational environment, capability to work effectively with colleagues from other cultures, and ability to create supportive and effective professional relationships in overseas environments.

Essential Physical Requirements

The most important physical requirements of the job are: speaking, hearing, vision, mental endurance, tolerance for extreme environmental conditions, physical endurance, dexterity, and mobility.


At the time of application, applicants must possess:
  • Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Doctor of Osteopathy (DO) degree from a school in the U.S. or Canada that was approved by a recognized U.S. accrediting body in the year of the applicant's graduation.
  • MD or DO or equivalent degree from a foreign school that provided educational and medical knowledge equivalent to accredited schools in the U.S.
  • Subsequent to obtaining a MD or DO degree, a candidate must have completed formal residency training. Qualifying graduate training programs include only those residency programs within the U.S or Canada and which are approved by an accrediting body recognized by the American Medical Association (AMA) or American Osteopathic Association (AOA).

You must submit a copy of your university transcript(s) with your application. If you do not submit this documentation to demonstrate your educational achievements, your candidacy will not continue.

Official or unofficial transcripts may be submitted with your application. Your transcript must include your name, the school's name, and, if applicable, the degree and date awarded and have no missing pages. A transcript missing any of these elements will not pass the minimum qualifications and the candidacy will not continue. Copies of diplomas may not be submitted in lieu of transcripts for education above high school level.

Education from a program or institution within the United States must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education,

Education completed in foreign high schools, colleges or universities may be used to meet the education requirements if you can show that the foreign education is comparable to that received in an accredited educational institution in the United States. It is your responsibility to provide such evidence when applying. Only accredited organizations recognized as specializing in the interpretation of foreign education credentials that are members of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) or the Association of International Credential Evaluators, Inc. (AICE) are accepted. If documentation from an accredited organization is not provided, your candidacy will not continue.



For further information on the evaluation of foreign education, please refer to the Office of Personnel Management and the U.S. Department of Education. The U.S. Department of State neither endorses nor recommends any individual evaluation service.


U.S. Department of Education:

Additional information

*EMPLOYMENT ELIGIBILITY VERIFICATION PROGRAM (E-Verify) - Verification of employment eligibility in the United States is required.

U.S. law requires organizations to employ only individuals who may legally work in the United States - either U.S. citizens, or foreign citizens who have the necessary authorization. This agency utilizes E-Verify to compare information from the Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, to data from U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Social Security Administration (SSA) records to confirm employment eligibility. If the employee's information does not match DHS and/or SSA records, the employee is given an opportunity to resolve the problem. If eligibility cannot be verified, employment will be terminated.

**The Department of State Suitability Review Panel and standards are defined in Chapter 3 of the Foreign Affairs Manual. For more information please visit: .

***For more information about Veteran's Preference and how it is applied in the selection process, please visit:

No applicant will be considered who has previously been separated from the Foreign Service under sections §607, §608, §610 or §611 of the Foreign Service Act of 1980, as amended, or who resigned or retired in lieu of separation under these provisions. In addition, no applicant will be considered who has previously been separated for failure to receive a career appointment under section §306 of the Foreign Service Act of 1980, as amended, or who resigned or retired in lieu thereof.

A Foreign Service Specialist separated for failure to receive a career appointment under section 306 may not re-apply to be a Foreign Service Specialist in the same skill code but may apply for another skill code or to be a Foreign Service Generalist.

Executive Branch agencies are barred by 5 US Code 3303 as amended from accepting or considering prohibited political recommendations and are required to return any prohibited political recommendations to sender. In addition, as mandated by 5 US Code 3110, relatives of federal employees cannot be granted preference in competing for these employment opportunities.

It is the policy of the Federal Government to treat all employees with dignity and respect and to provide a workplace that is free from discrimination whether discrimination is based on race, color, religion, sex (including gender identity or pregnancy), national origin, disability, political affiliation, marital status, membership in an employee organization, age, sexual orientation, or other non-merit factors.

The Department of State provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities. Applicants requiring reasonable accommodations for any part of the application or hiring process should so advise the Department at, within one week of receiving their invitation to the oral assessment. Decisions for granting reasonable accommodations are made on a case-by-case basis.

For information on FS Salary, visit .

Please visit for more information on Foreign Service medical careers.

How You Will Be Evaluated

You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

Candidates will be evaluated on their total background including experience, education, awards, training, and self-development as it relates to the position. Selection for this position will be made only from among candidates possessing the best qualifications. Part-time work experience will be prorated.

Medical Credentialing and Indemnification

Applicants are subject to a medical credentialing process conducted by the Quality Management Staff of the Bureau of Medical Services. The medical credentialing process includes queries of the National Practitioner Data Bank and Physician Data Profile through the American Medical Association (AMA). Once hired, medical personnel are indemnified for official duties only through the U.S. Federal Tort Claims Act.
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Background checks and security clearance

Security clearance
Top Secret

Drug test required

Required Documents

It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure all required documents are uploaded and the application is complete before the closing deadline of this announcement. Any missing required documents or incomplete applications will result in your application not being considered further.
  • USAJobs Résumé Builder is the only format that is accepted for this Vacancy Announcement.
  • Completed online application including the required Accomplishments Questionnaire and Statement of Interest narratives in the online application.
  • Uploaded all required supporting documentation including university transcripts, certifications, professional licenses, or completed forms as required in this Vacancy Announcement to qualify for this position.
  • For applicants who are age 60 to 65, you must provide your Veteran's Preference documentation at the time of your application. If claiming a 5 pt. veteran's preference, you must submit a copy of your DD-214 or Certification of service. If claiming a 10 pt. veteran's preference, you must submit your VA letter and SF-15, in addition to your DD-214 or Certification of service. A Certification must be from the armed forces that certifies the service member is expected to be discharged or released from active duty under honorable conditions within 120 days after the Certification is submitted by the applicant and should include military service dates, date of expected discharge or release, and character of service and disability rating, if applicable.

  • Accomplishments Questionnaire and Statement of Interest

    These required questions provide an opportunity to describe examples and accomplishments from your education, life, and/or work experience that demonstrate your qualifications for becoming a Foreign Service Specialist. Examples can be drawn from any part of your professional or personal experience. Each response is limited to 300 words or fewer (maximum length 2,000 characters) for each item. You should compose your replies carefully, as one of the skills necessary to succeed as a Foreign Service Specialist is the ability to write clearly and concisely. Answers to all items in the Accomplishments Questionnaire and Statement of Interest are required and must be completed in the online application.

    • Describe your clinical experience working with special patient populations including gender-based care, pediatrics, patients with multiple medical issues, and/or patients facing hardship. Include the type of practice setting and the average number of patients seen weekly. Include a statement about your ability to manage care for such populations in a remote setting.
    • Describe your clinical experience with trauma (if any) and give a self-assessment of your abilities to care for and stabilize multiple trauma patients prior to a medical evacuation.
    • Organizational abilities: Describe a specific achievement demonstrating your planning and organizational skills in the setting of a multidisciplinary clinical team or practice.
    • Leadership and teamwork abilities: Discuss your abilities to participate as a team member working toward a common goal, as well as examples of your ability to lead a team in the accomplishment of a goal.
    • Public speaking and teaching ability: Describe specific examples demonstrating your public speaking and teaching abilities as part of an assignment or work-related task.
    • Interpersonal skills: Provide an example of effectively dealing with difficult patients, colleagues, or situations at work utilizing your interpersonal skills.
    • Management skills: Describe examples of your skills in operating health units, including supervising employees and administrative tasks.
    • Medical research skills: Describe examples of how you have used medical science databases and technology tools to research diseases and remain current and relevant with your clinical skills.
    • Crisis response skills: Describe examples of what you learned from the COVID pandemic about responding to epidemics and pandemics. Include lessons learned regarding crisis management, contingency planning, public health, and related skills.
    • Work flexibility: Describe examples illustrating your willingness to change, learn, and take on new assignments. Provide input on your ability to work as required on remote platforms such as telemedicine or internet-based networks, or in unanticipated or unconventional work settings and locations.

    Required narrative Statement of Interest which discusses your:
    • Motivation for joining the Foreign Service,
    • Relevant work experience, including any unique strengths not previously mentioned, such as special skills (e.g. addictions medicine), current licenses, certificates, honors, awards, special accomplishments, and/or training (with date completed) relating to this position, and
    • Experience living or working in a multicultural environment, overseas or in the United States.

    If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:

    Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education .

    Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.

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