Evaluation of a Program to Identify and Pre-Condition Trainees With Low Physical Fitness: Attrition and Cost Analysis
ARMY CENTER FOR HEALTH PROMOTION AND PREVENTIVE MEDICINE ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND MD
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From October 1999 to July 2004, all new recruits who arrived for Basic Combat Training ECT participated in the Fitness Assessment Program FAP. The FAP involved an entry-level physical fitness test that new recruits took when they arrive at the Reception Station. Those passing the test entered BCT. Those failing the test entered a special physical training unit where they exercised until they could pass the test and then enter BCT. This report examines the FAP in terms of the number of recruits initially screened out by the test, the effects of the screening test on attrition, and cost effectiveness. Historical data on the proportion of trainees who failed the test was obtained from Ft Jackson, South Carolina. Attrition was compared in 2 groups of recruits, one that failed the test and went directly into BCT No Pre-Conditioning NPC group and another that trained to the test standards before entering BCT Pre-Conditioning PC group. Cost effectiveness estimates were based on a figure of 27,628 per recruit. From early 1998 through Fiscal Year 2003, the proportion of recruits failing the screening test ranged from 4 to 7 for men and 10 to 24 for women. When BCT attrition was considered, discharges were over 3 times higher in the male NPC group than in the PC group 25 vs. 8 the trend was similar among the women but the difference was half as large 29 vs. 19. When attrition in the special physical training unit was included with BCT attrition, the proportion of discharges was more than twice as high in the male NPC group than in the male PC group 25 vs. 12 the female NPC and PC groups had a similar proportion of discharges 29 vs. 27, NPC and PC, respectively.
- Anatomy and Physiology