Warfighter Refractive Eye Surgery Program
The Warfighter Refractive Eye Surgery Program (WRESP) was implemented to provide refractive eye surgery for active duty service members. It is designed to decrease dependence on glasses or contact lenses and increase combat effectiveness. The Fort Bragg WRESP was the first refractive surgery program in the Army, opening in May 2000. As of 2017, more than 50,000 refractive surgeries have been performed at Womack.
To be the national leader in Warfighter refractive eye surgery using cutting edge technology and delivering an unsurpassed patient experience.
Guidelines and Program Requirements
All active duty, activated National Guard, and Reserve service members (Army, Navy, Air Force or Marines) are eligible for refractive surgery under the WRESP program if they meet the following criteria:
- Approval by commanding officer
- No adverse personnel actions pending
- At least six months remaining on active duty
- Eye exam within the past 24 months (Optometry)
If You Meet Requirements
Download the Refractive Eye Surgery Patient Application Packet.
Contact Lens Users
- You will need to be out of contact lenses a minimum of 14 days prior to preoperative appointment.
- Even a few hours of contact lens use will affect your surgical results and preoperative testing.
What You Should Expect Next
Please note that we currently have a wait time of 2-3 months for surgery.
- A member of our staff will review your packet.
- If guidelines are met then our front desk will contact you to schedule your preoperative appointment testing. You will be contacted in order of receipt. You may wish to have a driver with you that day as you will have your eyes dilated.
- Expect the preoperative appointment to take approximately 2-3 hours.
How Surgery Affects Schooling and Assignments
Service members of every military occupational specialty can receive LASIK or PRK surgery. Having had refractive surgery does NOT necessarily disqualify a service member from attending special military schools (jump, Ranger, Special Forces, HALO, etc.); the individual would have to obtain a waiver. The refractive surgery clinic staff can provide more information.
Commander authority is mandatory to receive the surgery. Upon completion of the surgery, the service member will be given five to seven days of convalescent leave and will have a 30-day profile (no Army Physical Fitness Test can be administered and the service member will not be permitted to participate in any field exercises during this time frame). The service member will not be approved for most schools (Ranger School, Airborne School, Air Assault) for 90 days after surgery. The service member will typically not be deployable for 30-90 days after surgery.