Medicine Merit Badge for Boy Scouts

Medicine Merit Badge for Boy Scouts

If you know a Boy Scout who thinks he might want to be a doctor, have him look at the requirements for the Medicine merit badge.

The practice of medicine has a rich history that spans several centuries. Since the first use of plants and other items as simple medicines and balms, many men and women have contributed to the advancement of the “healing arts.”

Medicine Merit Badge Requirements

  1.  Discuss with your counselor the influence that EIGHT of the following people had on the history of medicine:
    1. Hippocrates
    2. William Harvey
    3. Antonie van Leewenhoek
    4. Edward Jenner
    5. Florence Nightingale
    6. Louis Pasteur
    7. Gregor Mendel
    8. Joseph Lister
    9. Robert Koch
    10. Daniel Hale Williams
    11. Wilhelm Conrad Roentgen
    12. Marie and Pierre Curie
    13. Walter Reed
    14. Karl Landsteiner
    15. Alexander Fleming
    16. Charles Richard Drew
    17. Helen Raussig
    18. James Watson and Francis Crick
    19. Jonas Salk
  2. Explain the Hippocratic Oath to your counselor, and compare the original version to a more modern one. Discuss to whom those subscribing to the original version of the oath owe the greatest allegiance.
  3. Discuss the health-care provider–patient relationship with your counselor, and the importance of such a relationship in the delivery of quality care to the patient. Describe the role of confidentiality in this relationship.
  4. Do the following:
    1.  Describe the roles the following people play in the delivery of health care in your state. (Note: Not all may exist in your state.)
      1. Allopathic physician
      2. Chiropractor
      3. Emergency medical technician
      4. Licensed practical/vocational nurse
      5. Medical assistant
      6. Medical laboratory technologist
      7. Nurse-midwife
      8. Nurse practitioner
      9. Occupational therapist
      10. Optometrist
      11. Osteopathic physician
      12. Pharmacist
      13. Physical therapist
      14. Physician’s assistant
      15. Podiatrist
      16. Psychologist
      17. Radiologic technologist
      18. Registered nurse
      19. Respiratory therapist
    2. Describe the educational and licensing requirements for five of those in 4a—other than 4a(1)—practicing health care in your state.
  5. Tell what is meant by the term “primary care” with regard to a medical specialty. Briefly describe the types of work done by physicians in the following “core” specialties:
    1. Internal medicine*
    2. Family practice*
    3. Obstetrics/gynecology*
    4. Pediatrics*
    5. Psychiatry
    6. Surgery
    7. Describe the additional educational requirements for these specialties.
  6.  Do the following:
    1. Briefly describe the types of work performed by physicians in FIVE of the following specialties or subspecialties:
      1. Allergy/immunology
      2. Anesthesiology
      3. Cardiology
      4. Colon and rectal surgery
      5. Dermatology
      6. Emergency medicine
      7. Endocrinology
      8. Gastroenterology
      9. Geriatric medicine
      10. Hematology/oncology
      11. Infectious disease
      12. Nephrology
      13. Neuro surgery
      14. Neurology
      15. Nuclear medicine
      16. Ophthalmology
      17. Orthopedic surgery
      18. Otolaryngology/head and neck surgery
      19. Pathology
      20. Physical medicine and rehabilitation
      21. Plastic, reconstructive, and maxillofacial surgery
      22. Preventive medicine
      23. Radiology
      24. Rheumatology
      25. Thoracic/cardiothoracic surgery
      26. ology
      27.  Vascular surgery
    2. Describe the additional educational requirements for the five specialties or subspecialties you chose in 6a.
  7. Visit a physician’s office*, preferably one who delivers “primary care.” (This may be that of your counselor.) Discuss the components of a medical history and physical examination (an official BSA health form may be used to guide this discussion), and become familiar with the instruments used. Describe the characteristics of a good diagnostic test to screen for disease (e.g., routine blood pressure measurement). Explain briefly why diagnostic tests are not “perfect.” Show how to take a blood pressure and a pulse reading.
  8. Do the following:
    1. Discuss the roles medical societies, employers, the insurance industry, and the government play in influencing the practice of medicine in the United States.
    2. Briefly tell how your state monitors the quality of health care within its borders, and how it provides care to those who do not have health insurance.
  9. Discuss with your counselor the health-care delivery systems in the United States, Sweden, and China.
  10. Serve as a volunteer at a health-related event or facility in your community (e.g., blood drive, “health fair,” blood pressure screening, etc.) approved by your counselor.

* “Primary care” specialties
** If this cannot be arranged, demonstrate to your counselor that you understand the components of a
medical history and physical, and discuss the instruments involved.

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