|Emergency Medical Hologram AK-1|
|Starfleet Rank Uncommissioned|
|Portrayed Robert Picardo|
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.