Doctor, The

Rank: Uncommissioned
Last recorded assignment: Chief medical officer, U.S.S. Voyager
Full File Name: Emergency Medical Hologram AK-1
Activation Date: SD 48308.2 (2371)
Reinitialized Date: SD 50252 (2373)
Origin of program: Jupiter Station Holo-Programming Center
Original Programmer: Dr. Lewis Zimmerman, Starfleet
Programming: Taken from among 3,000 cultures and 47 specific surgeons
Office: (through 2378) Adjoining Sickbay on Deck 5, U.S.S. Voyager

**Includes updates through SD 55000 (2378); updated addenda pending

***SPECIAL NOTE: Captain's Entry by Kathryn Janeway

While our "doctor" is indeed an Emergency Medical Hologram pressed into service, his ongoing evolution due to his adaptive programming compels me to open this file entry to catalog his numerous contributions to our crew.

File Update: Delta Quadrant Addendum
Report by Cmdr. Chakotay, First Officer, U.S.S. Voyager

Our ship's Doctor is a holographic figure — an emergency medical program devised by Starfleet programmers. When the ship's doctor and entire medical staff were killed in the "Caretaker's" displacement wave, the Doctor by necessity became the resident physician aboard the U.S.S. Voyager, assisted by first Paris and then Kes, a quick study in medical training.

The program's first statement upon activation is usually "Please state the nature of the medical emergency;" the automatic command was altered to allow his own creativity, but the Doctor preferred the known opening to creating his own more clever and personable lines. Initiation is automatic upon red alert status; the program is usually set for high magnetic cohesion, but it can be lessened to a mere image. For security's sake in a crisis it carries its own power grid separate from the nominal ship's Holodeck system. His wide array of programming has allowed him to keep Neelix alive with holographic lungs, save the Vidiian hematologist Danara Pel via a temporary holographic body, and even to alter DNA so as to remerge Torres' human and Klingon halves, reform Paris and Janeway from their retro-evolution as amphibians, and ensure the safety of Wildman's human-Ktarian baby at birth.

The AK-1 program indeed makes the Doctor a genius when it comes to medicine, but his bedside manner leaves something to be desired — although he has already come far since he was first the joke and then the bane of the U.S.S. Voyager crew. In fact, it's harder to tell what's evolved more: the Doctor's own self-respect, or the respect he's given by his colleagues — with thanks on both counts largely due to his surprise assistant, Kes — though he still rubs Torres the wrong way and usually can't stand Neelix. Prodded by her and the simple needs of their predicament, Janeway has seen to it that not only is the Doctor accorded more briefings and updates, but he can now turn himself off — a small matter until seen in the light of independence.

Thanks to various crises, as when Harry's Holodeck program began "devouring" the crew, the Doctor has even ventured from his familiar and all-but-mastered medical world to real-life adventures and even fear and heartbreak outside Sickbay. Also at Kes' urging he has considered a host of names but most recently has tried "Schmullus," the uncle of Vidiian hematologist Dr. Danara Pel, whom he saved and actually fell in love with, leaning on Paris and Kes for romantic advice. The experience even prompted the Doctor to open his own personal log on SD 49504.3, to learn to dance, and to borrow Paris' holo-program for "parking" in an archaic '57 Chevy ground vehicle on Mars.

Due to the memory circuit degradation of extremely close kinoplasmic radiation, an EMH malfunction occurred ca. SD 48892.1, caused by a feedback loop between the Holodeck computer and the doctor's program, which was running a holo-novel at the time to "relax" at the captain's suggestion. No one was affected but the program itself, which was being convinced that it was its human lead programmer, Dr. Lewis Zimmerman, amid a holographic study simulation of a battle-damaged ship and crew.

Apart from the clinical and statistical notes on parenting, he felt unqualified to help Kes with her decision on motherhood, but she still picked him as an absent parental figure to perform the rolisisin pre-mating ritual. He in turn took her advice to make himself sick, literally, to better empathize with patients; his resulting holo-version of Levodian flu lasted a day longer than he'd intended thanks to Kes, and I think he "learned" a helpful lesson in patience.

File Update: SD 50500
Report by Capt. K. Janeway

I never would have believed it, but our "Doctor" now has more memory and, thanks to the 29th century, is confined to Sickbay no more. It is taking some getting used to, but he has only rarely been troubled by glitches in the self-powered armband mobile emitter he wears after the time-stealing technocrat Starling "donated" it to us.

Despite the scare he gave us when his memory overloaded and degraded, I see no harm in continuing to allow and encourage his exploration of humanity — as long as it does not endanger the crew's security and B'Elanna assures me we have the technical support to allow it. I admit, I was skeptical when we took the chance of initializing his memory and then used the diagnostic program to add more, but I would hope — La Boheme divas aside — that these experiences to come will have a mellowing effect on his personality subroutine, which can only aide the crew on our very long journey.

We could not get along without him, and I owe him my life more than once — such as when he used his daring mix of diplomacy and tactics to retrieve the Vidiians' antidote to the virus which quarantined Chakotay and myself on a world to be left behind. His idea to emit holographic support ships proved promising, but I must add that I especially commend his defense of the ship with Crewman Suder against the Kazon-Nistrim, and against the macrocosms, which we subdued together.

And while I opposed his choice, I will always remember and respect his citing of the Hippocratic Oath to "do no harm" when I made the difficult decision to deintegrate the entity Tuvix into its original patterns for Tuvok and Neelix.

The sum total of all these actions increasingly only leads me to examine our preconceived notions of life and learning.