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Command Philosophy

Naval Hospital Oak Harbor > Command Info > Command Philosophy
Captain Frederick J. McDonald, Medical Corps, United States Navy
My command philosophy is simply the following: "Patients first, Shipmates always!"
1. The purpose of this document is to outline for you my command philosophy.  It is my sincerest belief the better you understand how I approach leadership and management, and my expectations, the more effective we will be as a TEAM in achieving any objectives set by higher echelon and/or ourselves. 
2. The first step of understanding my command philosophy is to know who I am.  I am a career officer in the U.S. Navy.  I am a medical corps officer, a board certified family physician, a life-long learner, but I am defined by more than these alone:
  • I am a husband, father, brother, and son;
  • I am married to the love of my life and best friend;
  • I have four wonderful children, who exceed my every expectation;
  • I am human and have experienced happiness, sorrow, and disappointment;
  • I love sports, reading, and spending time with those I love;
  • I can be quiet, comical, studious, and am passionate about healthcare;
  • I am an American, embrace diversity, and believe we have the power to be successful, happy, and fulfilled - we can choose the path we take!
3. My command philosophy is simply the following:

"Patients first, Shipmates always!"

4. "Patients First":
  • We exist as a unit because of Patients;
  • We will promote Readiness, Quality Care, and Customer Satisfaction;
  • "Patients first" does not mean we always provide what is wanted, but we practice evidenced-based medicine and provide what is needed;
  • We endeavor to communicate and understand
  • We are not afraid to say "I am sorry," "I don't know," or ask for help.

"Shipmates always":

  • We will provide outstanding service, regardless of rank, service, retired, or family member;
  • We will take care of each other, weather on permanent orders to us, temporarily assigned to us, in uniform or not;
  • We will treat each other with respect and dignity;
  • We will challenge each other to innovate, to excel, and work as One Team;
  • We will embrace diversity as the platform for capitalizing on the uniqueness we each possess and the strength it provides in support of our mission;
  • We will adhere to Navy Core Values: Honor, Courage, and Commitment!
In closing, success is "We" not a "Me" phenomena.  By adhering to the aforementioned principles, I firmly believe our success as a Command and as individuals is guaranteed.  I ask you to join me, to reach beyond the norm, to challenge all assumptions, to challenge yourself, and to always push yourself:

"Patients first, Shipmates always!"


F. J. McDonald
Captain, Medical Corps
United States Navy

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