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Wilderness Emergency Care Program

What is the Wilderness Emergency Care Program?

The Wilderness Emergency Care Program is a family of courses that train you to:

  • understand and be aware of wilderness hazards
  • Prevent and avoid wilderness hazards
  • do emergency care in the wilderness or anywhere, with the supplies and equipment you may have or can improvise.

The Program also prepares you for:

  • Disaster Medicine situations
  • Travel Medicine situations
  • Any urban, non-urban or “non-traditional” Emergency Care situations when emergency medical services and hospitals are delayed, overwhelmed or inaccessible.

The Program Courses were designed to help you make logical and causal connections; not to just memorize lists of signs, symptoms and treatment, so that you understand what you are doing. You learn:

  • how the body, and body systems work
  • What can go wrong with those systems due to:
    • Injury
    • environmental stress
    • or a medical condition
  • How to find out what the problem is
  • How to treat the problems and stabilize the victim
  • How to evacuate and get help

All this is taught with the mindset that you will have delayed access to 911 and the Healthcare System

The individual courses offered through the WEC Program are:

  • Basic Wilderness First Aid ( 8 hours )
  • Wilderness FIrst Aid ( 16 hours )
  • Wilderness First Responder ( 80 hours )
  • Wilderness EMT Upgrade ( 40 hours )

Basic Wilderness First Aid

A Basic Practical Certification course that is ideal for those who venture into the  outdoors. This 8 hour course is an introduction to a combination of basic knowledge and skills to deal with common ailments and injuries anywhere based on what you have. This course is usually completed in all day course.

Wilderness First Aid

A Practical Certification course that is ideal for outdoor enthusiast on day trips or short adventures, and leaders of small groups. This 16 hour course is an introduction to general medical concepts and basic life support skills through lecture, discussion and skills development. Learn the knowledge and skills to perform a victim assessment, deal with ailments and injuries, and basic evacuation principles.

Wilderness First Responder

A Professional Level Certification Course that  is the ideal medical training for those who are in remote areas; including those who are outdoor educators, guides, military, professional search and rescue teams, researchers, and those involved in disaster relief. Since there are no prerequisites for this course other than obtaining CPR/AED Certification (unless provided in the course), anyone with the interest of taking this course is welcome to do so. 

The course introduces and exposes students to medical concepts and basic life support skills, to learn essential principles and skills required to assess and manage medical problems and injuries in remote, isolated and extreme environments for days and weeks if necessary.

Wilderness EMT Upgrade

A Professional Level Certification Course that builds on previously attained EMS or Medical* training and expertise to meet the special challenges of the remote and unconventional environment. This training is ideal training for medical personnel who would like to enhance their skills and experience for use in the rural, wilderness, and technical rescue setting. This course is ideal for medical personnel working in rural EMS, Search and Rescue, Law Enforcement, Disaster Response, on wilderness expeditions, and those who travel to or work in remote destinations with poor or non-existent healthcare systems such as 3rd world countries.

The course builds upon previous medical training & experience and challenges you to apply wilderness care principles. Students learn to provide assessment, treatment, and stabilization with minimal supplies and equipment, in less than ideal environments and situations; where improvising is often needed to substitute for standard and common supplies and equipment in established health care systems.

*The WEMT Upgrade Course is open to any certified, registered or licensed medical provider, ie: LPN, RN, PA, NP, MD, DO, etc. Those who do not possess a State or National EMS Certification will receive a WFR Certification and a Certificate of Completion. Additionally, any EMS Provider completing a WFR Course receives a WEMT Upgrade Certification.

Here at NorthEast Emergency, Disaster & Safety Associates, we offer the Wilderness Emergency Care Program from the National Association for Search and Rescue (NASAR). The WEC Program was designed by Steve Donelan. Certifications are recognized nationally, and in many other countries and continues to expand. We are also able to customize the training program to fit your needs as well as provide additional educational units that are co-developed and Physician reviewed.