This year marks 103 years of committed and honorable service of the U.S. Navy Dental Corps. On behalf of Navy Medicine, I would like to express my gratitude to the Dental Corps for ensuring dental readiness and optimizing dental health of our Sailors, Marines, and families.
Established in 1912, the history of the Dental Corps dates back to before World War I, when the Corps, then comprised of 30 dental surgeon assistants, first deployed with the Marines.
Since World War I, the Dental Corps has been a part of every wartime effort and has grown significantly in strength and numbers. Their addition to Navy Medicine allowed the Navy to recruit new Sailors and Marines who would have otherwise been rejected due to dental treatment needs.
Today, the Dental Corps continues to ensure high operational readiness for our Sailors, Marines, and their families. They serve Sailors and Marines on the battlefield and aboard ships, performing medical duties beyond the scope of a typical dental practice. Through the Navy’s annual humanitarian missions, such as Continuing Promise and Pacific Partnership, as well as deployed mobile units used in fleet support areas and on the battlefield, they are truly capable of providing world-class dental care, anytime, anywhere.
Their dedication to the readiness and health of our Sailors, Marines, and families, as well as those in need around the globe, has deemed the Dental Corps an essential part of our force readiness, and has earned them a prominent spot in the history of the United States Navy.
To the more than 1,300 active duty and reserve members of the Navy Dental Corps, I commend you for 103 years of dedicated service and sacrifice. Happy Birthday Dental Corps!
VADM Matthew L. Nathan
Surgeon General of the Navy