New DLC system replaces Air Force’s former profile process

  • Published
  • By Capt. Joseph Huseman
  • 34th Bomb Squadron
Ellsworth began to implement the new Air Force-wide Duty Limiting Condition system Nov. 9. This program was rolled out on a base-by-base basis over the past year and Ellsworth's turn arrived in November.

The premise of the new program, as defined by the Chief of Staff of the Air Force, is to provide relevant squadron personnel (ie. squadron commanders, first sergeants, unit deployment monitors, ect.) with timely information regarding their squadron's mobility readiness and duty limitations.

Many servicemembers may be familiar with the old profile form, Air Force Form 422, which was printed out and given to active-duty members after each medical appointment. Air Force Form 422 has been replaced by the new Air Force Form 469, and will now be printed out at the squadron and given to the member by their UDM, first sergeant or squadron commander.

If servicemembers have mobility restrictions (what used to be referred to as a 4T profile), their squadron commander will have to sign the Air Force Form 469 and personally issue it to the servicemember.

If the members have any fitness limitations, they must take a copy of the Air Force Form 469 to their squadron unit fitness program manager for fitness training restrictions to be documented. If this step is not taken, the member is expected to be at all squadron physical training sessions and accomplish fitness tests as appropriate.

This new system also changes the way doctors and physician assistants at the 28th Medical Group prescribe duty limitations. From now on, duty limitations will be based on the service member's ability to do their job and to deploy. The standards from Air Force Instruction 48-123 will be used to determine whether a service member is physically ready to deploy.

To deploy an individual must be able to:
- perform duties for a prolonged period (12 hours or more)
- subsist on field rations for prolonged periods
- be free of medical conditions, including pregnancy, which require special appliances, periodic treatment or follow up by medical specialists or sub specialists during the period of deployment
- wear or use all required items of uniform or personal-protective equipment which includes flak vest, helmet and the chemical warfare defense ensemble
- perform heavy physical work over at least short periods of time. This includes the ability to carry all required deployment baggage (at least 40 lbs) and to run at least 100 yards.
- have sufficient unaided hearing to safely perform duty
- have sufficient night vision to travel unassisted at night
- have sufficient corrected visual acuity to safely perform duty
- have normal tolerance to heat and cold
- have no increased predisposition to sudden incapacitation, and
- travel by either air or sea.

For example, a patient with a broken right arm who is placed in a cast for six weeks would need a mobility restriction, since the ability to lift 40 pounds is hindered by their broken arm; a follow up would be needed to have the cast removed. Duty restrictions limiting them from bearing weight or bending the right arm would also result. Since restrictions would last longer than 30 days, the wing fitness manager would need to be consulted to develop a physical treatment plan that keeps them exercising but excuses them from push-ups until the arm heals.

The new DLC system provides greater visibility to commanders and UDMs to better assess mission and mobility readiness. Occupationally driven duty limitations will be communicated by physicians to line commanders on Air Force Form 469 so personnel can be utilized in a safe and productive manner while recovering from illnesses or injuries. Our current operational environment is extremely demanding, and the new DLC system will improve our line commanders' ability to meet operational readiness needs by helping them use all their personnel to the best of their physical abilities.