STAFF SPOTLIGHT: VETERANS DAY EDITION

Remote Medical International would like to recognize our employees who are veterans or are currently serving for Veterans Day. We appreciate the hard work that both Remote Physician Assistant Kaycie Cartwright and Manager, Medical Screening Services Joel Walker have contributed to the Remote Medical International team, and have found  they learned most of their leadership skills and work ethic from their military service. Read more about their time in the service. 

KAYCIE CARTWRIGHT

Originally from Richmond, Virginia, Kaycie Cartwright joined the Virginia Army National Guard in 2013 because she wanted to give back and provide medical care to soldiers. Cartwright still serves as a captain in the infantry as a combat physician assistant and started at Remote Medical International in December of 2017. 

Q: Is there a moment that stands out to you in your time of service? 

Cartwright: I think it’s not a specific moment, but I was able to deploy in 2016 with the infantry battalion and prior to deployment was the first time females were integrated for coed deployment and that entire experience was memorable. There were a lot of adjustments and it made a difference for those enlisted and how they went about their mission. It was eye opening.

Q: Is there any advice you would give to someone transitioning from the military to a civilian job?

Cartwright: Spending a year on deployment, I saw soldiers who had a job for a year and also dealing with unemployment or employment that is not guaranteed. The number one thing that they do is short themselves, they don’t understand the skills that they have and don’t always bring them to the table for future employers. I think soldiers need to market their military skills for civilian careers, because they have trade skills and can work with their hands—skills the average civilian doesn’t have.

Q: What made you want to work at Remote Medical International?

Cartwright: Remote Medical International does remote medicine, which is exactly what deployment is in the military, at least to me. In the army, we are out there in the field and practicing medicine. Our job is to treat and stabilize traumas and Remote Medical International has a similar bone to it, sometimes we have to manage care with very little resources. You have to get creative and come up with tools that you may not have in a hospital to treat a patient. It allows me to think outside the box.

Q: What do you like most about working at Remote Medical International?

Cartwright: I think it’s been the people, I think the company is growing and it’s growing quickly over two years but even though some people have changed, the ones that are constant are there to listen to you and even the physicians are there and I feel like I have a voice with the company, people are always asking. You don’t find that in a private medical—everyone is overworked or overburdened.

JOEL WALKER

Originally from New Jersey, Joel Walker joined the Navy in 1995 following his family history as his grandfather, father, and uncle also served. Serving for over 20 years, Walker retired as an E6 in the Navy as a Corpsman. He was the aeromedical safety specialist for all Oceana Virginia, responsible for pilot safety gear. Walker joined Remote Medical International in 2016 and currently holds the position of manager, medical screening services.

Q: Is there a moment that stands out to you in your time of service? 

Walker: Throughout my career, I got to train VIPS and speciality flights, so we had everything from physicians to TV stars to professional wrestlers coming through training. We had a pilot come back who talked about, after they had a mid-air failure, they had to eject. He said he remembered me yelling, “keep your head back, keep your feet down,” at 20,000 feet and that all he could see was this big dude yelling at him.

He pulled the ejection handle, and remembers pulling the handle and wanting to look down but me saying to keep your head down. It was really cool, he survived an ejection, high speed from an intense aircraft and he directly related it to me and the crew that I worked with. 

When you eject from an aircraft, you have to put your body in the correct position, because you can actually break your neck. If the seat hits your leg the wrong way, you can also break your femur. For practice, we put pilots in a mockup of an airplane and they have to pull the handle and shoot up what looks like train tracks, about 15 feet in the air. We use air pressure to lift the seat, and they go from sitting in a desk chair in the ground to 15 feet above the ground in that same chair. It’s like the worst car crash ever, multiplied by 100.

Q: What do you miss about the service? 

Walker: I think I miss the brotherhood. The military community is very different than the work environment. We’ve all scrubbed toilets, stayed up all night on bridge watch, and we’ve all done those tasks. You earn your right to not have to do those anymore but it doesn’t mean those tasks are any less important. You remember doing them and you understand why we’re doing them. We’re all equal, all doing the same job and at the same time, for the same pay, same health care, housing, no one is truly special doing what we do. As I got senior in my career, it wasn’t a matter of enlisting, or becoming an officer. I was the subject matter expert, and a level of respect came with your rank, but you didn’t have to prove yourself to anybody. I know friends who will drop everything they are doing and fly to Washington to help me out, it’s pure brotherhood. 

Q: Is there any advice you would give to someone transitioning from the military to a civilian job?

Walker: Don’t settle, I thought when I retired, the first job I got would get would be the only job I would have for the rest of my career. Which is different because every three years, I may have had to move in the military, but I always had the same job. Your skill set from the military in leadership and manager skills are fleets and bounds above others. You also learn leadership and communication skills, time management, quality of work, and how to portray yourself well.

Q: What made you want to work at Remote Medical International?

Walker: I met a couple Remote Medical International employees at a wilderness medical society meeting in 2012 and we talked about instruction, training, and all of the jobs in these different fields. With my medical background, it seemed like a pretty cool company. When I retired, I went to North Carolina, medicine school, but my family wanted to move back to Seattle and I came onboard at Remote Medical International as an instructor to teach first aid classes before I became a part of the corporate team.  

Q: What do you like most about working at Remote Medical International?

Walker: The diversity of the company. We handle a lot, and my department has equal say in a lot of the projects. We don’t do some things but we still have this super broad spectrum of capabilities, whether that be supplying materials, people, helping companies evaluate health and safety, and taking their own people through health and safety needs, it’s really fun to be a part of something that is so pivotal. We do medical screening to help workers go to work and elongate their working lifestyle. I don’t want to make people work until they’re 80, but work until they’re 60 so they can retire to enjoy life for a little while. We want to keep them educated, keep them safe, and make recommendations to get them safe and get them qualified medical care and get them back to work in the grand scope. It’s a really good company for a veteran to find a good fit because we have such a diverse market.

We thank Walker, Cartwright and all Veterans for their time in the service and welcome applications for our open positions at Remote Medical International here.

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