Prior to enrolling in a course, please review our Functional Position Description. The criteria set forth in this document allows students to self-assess their ability to meet the demands of both a WMAI course as well as the demands of a certified wilderness medical provider in the field.
Wilderness First Aid
The best and most comprehensive course of its kind to offer relevant and realistic first-aid training for seasonal outdoor activities or short term wilderness endeavors and pursuits.
Wilderness First Aid is a two-day introduction to general medical concepts and basic life support skills. It is targeted to the outdoor enthusiast on day trips or short adventures. The course is taught by professional instructors with significant patient care and backcountry experience.
Wilderness Advanced First Aid
An entry-level course designed for professionals working in significantly remote settings for days or weeks.
Wilderness Advanced First Aid is comprehensive medical training designed for remote professionals or wilderness leaders who venture into remote and challenging environments. Wilderness Medicine differs significantly from standard first aid courses and other training that are oriented toward urban environments. This course teaches how to manage medical emergencies when hospitals and rescue services may not be available for an extensive time period. We prepare students for emergency situations that involve prolonged patient care, severe environments, and improvised equipment.
Bridge (WAFA to WFR)
The WAFA to WFR Bridge course upgrades the Wilderness Advanced First Aid to a Wilderness First Responder (WFR) in 4 days. This course must be taken within 3 years of receiving the WMA International WAFA certification or an equivalent from another provider. The WFR is the definitive medical training course for all outdoor professionals and enthusiasts. This course may be used as a recertification for those holding a current WFR certification or equivalent from another provider whose original WFR training was at least 64 hours in length. Current WMA International Wilderness EMS certificate holders may also use this course to recertify the wilderness portion of their certification.
**If you are using this course to recertify a WMA WEMS if is your responsibility to let the sponsor know when registering, and to inform the instructor on the first day of class.**
Wilderness First Responder
The Wilderness First Responder (WFR) course is the ideal medical training for outdoor educators, wilderness guides, members of the military, professional search and rescue teams, wildland firefighters, researchers, and those involved in disaster relief.
The course provides essential training in wilderness medicine, leadership, and critical thinking for professionals and leaders working and traveling in outdoor, low-resource, and remote environments. The WFR curriculum is both comprehensive and practical and involves a minimum of 70 hours of instruction when taught in the United States (hours vary slightly in other countries). During the course, students learn the essential principles and skills required to assess and manage medical problems in isolated and extreme environments for days and weeks if necessary. To earn certification, students must meet the criteria set forth in our Functional Position Description as well as the minimum WFR performance and testing standards by the last day of course. Upon successful completion of the course, students will receive a Wilderness First Responder certification and certification of CPR taught to an equivalent health care provider level. To meet a variety of student needs, we offer several different models of delivery for the WFR course.
Wilderness EMS Upgrade
Training for EMS personnel who would like to enhance their skills and experience for use in the rural, wilderness, and technical rescue setting.
The WEMS curriculum builds on EMS training and expertise to meet the special challenges of the remote and unconventional environment. It is designed for medical personnel working in rural EMS, search and rescue, law enforcement, disaster response, and on wilderness expeditions. Like all WMA International training, it represents the best application of the available science balanced by considerable clinical experience and the reality of providing medical care in difficult and dangerous places.
Wilderness Advanced Life Support
This program’s primary goal is to apply current medical knowledge and critical thinking for use in remote/resource challenged patient care settings. It is targeted toward advanced care medical practitioners.
The Wilderness Advanced Life Support (WALS) is Wilderness Medical Associates International’s most advanced level course. Our 36-hour course is run over 4 days (5 days for courses requiring translations). It is open to certified or licensed advanced level medical practitioners involved or interested in rescue, mass casualty, and remote outdoor environments or urban areas in disaster or crisis. This constantly-evolving course is highlighted by discussions of new and controversial ideas and the appropriate application of technologies. The learning environment is challenging, stimulating, and fun.
General objectives for this course include:
By the completion of this course participants should be able to:
- Understand the challenges and limitations of working in a remote/resource challenged, patient care setting.
- Explain principles of preventive care for patients and team members when faced by environmental challenges.
- Perform an accurate patient assessment when access to advanced diagnostics are not available
- Utilize useful medical and basic rescue equipment often available in a remote/resource challenged patient care setting.
- Via case studies and in practice during patient-oriented drills, demonstrate decision making ability for treatments and evacuations in remote resource/challenged patient care settings.
- Decide which medications and equipment that might be useful and appropriate in a variety of remote/resource challenged patient care settings.
Offshore Emergency Medicine
Offshore Emergency Medicine offers relevant and practical training for the largest and most remote wilderness on earth. As with all of our courses, we emphasize the understanding of body systems and principles of care to best prepare the medical officer to improvise and adapt to the infinite variety of challenges that the open sea can present. It is designed for voyaging sailors as well as professional mariners. Classroom instruction is tied to the student’s own experience through the liberal use of case studies, scenarios, and hands-on assessment problems in a marine context. Upon completion, students will earn a Wilderness First Aid certification. Previous medical training is not required.
Travel Medicine First Aid
Developed as a collaborative effort between Wilderness Medical Associates International and Habitat for Humanity to meet the medical needs of international remote program sites. This program has evolved to encompass medical response, risk reduction, and hazard identification in low to middle income countries for North American volunteer and study abroad groups. The design of this course is not to replace a travel medical clinic consultation, but instead to enhance a group’s ability to prepare, mitigate, and respond to medical emergencies while abroad.
Travel Medicine First Responder
The Travel Medicine First Responder (TMFR) is a travel medicine course built over a Wilderness First Responder (WFR) chassis. This course will cover trauma and environmental exposures the same as in a WFR course. Additionally, this course will look at travel and tropical disease exposures with an emphasis on how to make decisions for prevention and response. We will also look at international medical resources and evacuation and treatment decision-making. This course is not about complex diagnoses and advanced treatment. All scenarios will be internationally based.
- General concepts: body systems, anatomy/physiology, PAS, BLS
- Trauma and environmental hazards
- Epidemiology and hazard assessment, particularly in low/middle income countries
- Pathways of disease and how to avoid them along with all the preventative strategies, i.e., vaccinations, chemoprophylaxis, maintaining a health immune system, etc.
- Medical facility assessment and many of the scenarios will present with choices as to where to evacuate.
- Internationally focused toxins, bites and stings
- Most of the scenarios, examples and drills will be internationally based.
Conflict & Remote First Aid
The Conflict and Remote First Aid (CRFA) course, designed specifically for non-military professionals in remote conflict zones, is ideal first aid training adapted to hostile and war zone environments where equipment and personnel are limited. This hands-on training will explain, demonstrate, and reinforce the differences between conflict first aid and civilian pre-hospital trauma care and emphasize the inherent medical issues associated with remote travel.
Battlefield Medical Response
The Battlefield Medical Response (BMR) course, designed specifically for journalists and media professionals, is ideal first aid training adapted to hostile and war zone environments where equipment and personnel are limited. This hands-on training will explain, demonstrate, and reinforce the differences between battlefield first aid and civilian pre-hospital trauma care and emphasize the inherent medical issues associated with remote travel.
Wilderness First Aid for Field Services
The only Wilderness First Aid course that meets the specific needs of industry, technical, research, and field support employees in remote areas.
The 24-hour Wilderness First Aid for Field Services course provides first aid for industrial, technical, and field support staff in remote areas. Although the fundamental medical portion of this course is similar to those in a WMA International Wilderness First Aid course, the applied context is different.
Wilderness Medical Elective
A medical school elective designed for medical students interested in learning about the management of patients in remote and low resource areas.
This elective offers medical students an opportunity to expand their practical and academic knowledge through an educational experience that stresses problem-based learning and education among their peers. Our core pedagogical components instill the best practices of medical school education by including didactic sessions, case study discussions, a variety of simulated patient encounters, practical skills labs, and evidenced-based medicine reviews. Particular emphasis is given to assessing patients, formulating problem lists, and carrying out student-planned treatments (including evacuations) in relatively low-tech environments. Our goal is to help our students actively investigate and articulate these best practices via a curriculum that is engaging, practical, and hands-on.