US Navy

  • Company Industry
    Military / Marine Services

The Navy Bureau of Medicine and Surgery (BUMED) is the headquarters command for Navy Medicine. Under the leadership of the Navy Surgeon General, Navy Medicine provides high quality health care to beneficiaries in wartime and in peacetime. Highly trained Navy Medicine personnel deploy with Sailors and Marines worldwide - providing critical mission support aboard ship, in the air, under the sea and on the battlefield. At the same time, Navy Medicine's military and civilian health care professionals are providing care for uniformed services' family members and retirees at military treatment facilities around the globe. Every day, no matter what the environment, Navy Medicine is ready to care for those in need, providing world class care, anytime, anywhere. Today, BUMED is the site where the policies and direction for Navy Medicine are developed to ensure our Patient and Family Center Care vision carried out.


The Bureau of Medicine and Surgery (BUMED)—A Brief History

On 31 August 1842, Congress passed a Navy appropriations bill that was a blueprint for efficiency. The legislation provided for five bureaus to replace the outdated Board of Navy Commissioners—Yards and Docks; Construction, Equipment, and Repair; Provisions and Clothing; Ordnance and Hydrography; and Medicine and Surgery. The president appointed a chief to head each bureau. On 2 September 1842, Surgeon William P.C. Barton received orders to take the helm as BUMED’s first Chief. The Bureau of Medicine and Surgery (BUMED) soon became the central administrative headquarters for the Navy Medical Department and charged with oversight and policy relating to:


  • All medicines and medical stores of every description, used in the treatment of the sick, the diseased and the wounded;
  • All boxes, vials, and other vessels containing the same;
  • All clothing, beds, and bedding for the sick;
  • All surgical instruments of every kind;
  • The management of hospitals, so far as the patients therein are concerned;
  • All appliances of every sort, used in surgical and medical practice;
  • All contracts, accounts, and returns, relating to these and such other subjects as shall hereafter be assigned to this bureau.

With the unyielding passage of time and the evolution of naval technology and medicine over the course of the last century BUMED’s role in the Navy has undeniably changed.  However, over the last 171 years, BUMED has earned a proud record in medical administration and has undeniably contributed greatly to the Navy Medical Department’s development and efficiency.

Today,  BUMED  remains the last of the original Navy Bureaus.



 BUMED Campus Timeline

1791: The land now known as the “Hilltop in Foggy Bottom” is deeded to federal government by merchant Robert Peter.
1800: U.S. Marine Corps establishes a temporary headquarters on the Hilltop. Marine Corps Band performs their first concert on the Hilltop (and their first in the city of Washington) on 20 August 1800.
1801: U.S. Marine Corps relocates to Barracks in Southeast Washington.
1844: Permanent home for the U.S. Navy Depot of Charts and Instruments (later known at Naval Observatory) constructed on campus (Now Bldg 2). Matthew Fontaine Maury selected as Depot Superintendent.
1847: Maury family moves into new Superintendent Quarters.
1855: Maury writes Physical Geography of the Sea.
1861: Maury resigns commission in the U.S. Navy.
1863: President Lincoln visits Observatory.
1873: President U.S. Grant dedicates Great Equatorial telescope.

1876: Emperor Dom Pedro visits Observatory.

1877: Discovery of Martian moons, Phobos and Deimos
1893: Observatory moves to new home in Georgetown Heights.
1894: Naval Museum of Hygiene relocates to Old Observatory Building.
1902: Navy Medical School established at Museum of Hygiene.
1904: President Theodore Roosevelt dedicates the Benjamin Rush Statue.
1905: Hygiene Museum disestablished.
1906: Naval Hospital Washington moves to campus.
1923: Naval Dental School established on Hilltop.
1935: Hospital and Medical/Dental schools become Naval Medical Center.
1942: Naval Medical Center Washington moves to Bethesda. Bureau of Medicine and Surgery (BUMED) moves into campus.
2005: BUMED placed on Base Realignment and Closure List for relocation.
2012: BUMED relocates to the Defense HealthHeadquarters in Fall Church.
2012: State Department and Institute of Peace begin new chapter in saga of Hilltop campus.


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  • Office Phone 215-697-0449
  • Career Contact : Denise Paone

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