In 1979, Congress established the Board for Correction of Public Health Service (PHS) Commissioned Corps Records (Board) to provide an additional appeal route for any present or past Commissioned Corps Officer, regular or reserve, who believes there is an error in his or her record or that he or she has been treated unjustly.
Functioning on behalf of the Secretary, the Board is the highest administrative appeal within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for Commission Corps officers. Administration of the Board is delegated to the Deputy Assistant Secretary, Program Support Center. It was administratively removed from the Commissioned Corps to ensure fairness and avoid bias in Board decisions.
As a service to the Board, the Commissioned Corps has a major role in collecting information from Departmental records and other Commissioned Corps records outside the Department for submission to the Board staff. As an independent entity, the Board has the authority to seek information from outside Commissioned Corps channels if judged to be critical to making decisions. If practical, this is done only in extraordinary circumstances. The Board is not an investigative agency; however, it reserves the right to obtain additional information necessary to make a recommendation.
The Board can consider appeals resulting from errors or injustices dealing with appointments to the Commissioned Corps, disciplinary actions, disability retirements, reinstatements, use of leave, entitlements to pay and allowances, promotions, separations from the Commissioned Corps, etc., and removal of inaccurate, untimely, incomplete, or irrelevant information from official officer records.