Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Wilderness Advanced First Aid....check!

Alec eating lunch, single-handedly.
Alec just returned from a four-day Wilderness Advanced First Aid class, offered by Rutabaga and attended by 20 paddling instructors, guides and other people who work in outdoor recreation, particularly with kids.

This is follow-up course to the basic two-day Wilderness First Aid course many of us take to meet the requirement for maintaining certification as an American Canoe Association instructor. It can also be used as a recertification for Wilderness First Responders, of whom there were eight in this course, or as the first step toward becoming a Wilderness First Responder (the next being the four-day Bridge course). 

Like other training and certification programs we've undergone, each of these first aid courses raises participants' level of skill and scope of practice (or remit). Wilderness First Aid teaches basic skills for diagnosing and treating maladies we might encounter; Wilderness Advanced First Aid provides more depth and breadth for people with a higher level of responsibility for groups of people on longer trips into more remote areas.

Wilderness Medical Associates lead instructor Sawyer Alberi places a tornaquet on assistant instructor John Browning.
The course teaches patient assessment, a system that guides the process of diagnosing and making decisions about treating people who are ill or injured. It also teaches CPR, interventions (treatments), and procedures for stabilizing and evacuating patients. There are some classroom lectures and discussions, but the emphasis is on learning through experience by means of carefully designed scenarios. 

Mary, stabilized and ready fora helicopter evacuation after a mountaineering incident.
Trainings like these cost money and take time, but they're well worth it. The knowledge we gain helps us prevent some incidents and handle others if they arise. We hope to do more of the former and less of the latter.


Silbs said...

Great post. Great course with a wonderful instructor (JB). Thanks for sharing it all.

Ray said...

Sharon, we're having one at Naturally Superior in the spring. Perfect timing for a Canadian "vacation" if you'd like to take the course too. I'm doing the recert then. It'd be great to have you.

bpfamily said...

That's cool Ray. What level of program are you offering? And who is the provider?