Last month the Imagine crew partnered up with Wilderness Medical Associates to provide a four day long Wilderness Advanced First Aid training course in Taipei City. WMA has set the standard in wilderness medicine for over 30 years. Their thought-provoking curriculum is regularly updated by a group of healthcare professionals and recognised worldwide.
We made contact with a marvelous teacher named Sun who was willing to hold the course in English for us, allowing a wider potential audience of safety conscious foreigners to consider joining. This style of intensive training was aimed primarily at serious outdoor enthusiasts as well as some newer additions to the Imagine team. Our group of eight went on to spend a solid four days together alternating between highly engaging lectures, group discussions, Q&A and even the odd tree rescue scenario!
First Aid Course
Each morning at precisely 08:00 our class would begin, our teacher was punctual and efficient whilst conducting this smooth transfer of knowledge. We would run through until 17:00, sometimes 17:30, before being set around one hours worth of reading to be completed once we were home, this left time for approximately nothing else other than eating and sleeping. Leading such an intensive course certainly requires an extremely competent, highly skilled teacher and thankfully that’s exactly what we got.
Here’s a mere snippet of the topics we covered;
- Patient Assessment System
- Spine Injury Management
- Wilderness Wounds
- Cold Injury
- Altitude Illness
- Bites and Stings
- Allergy and Anaphylaxis
- Wilderness First Aid Kits
Mixing indoor lectures with challenging mock-emergency scenarios outside was perfect for throwing one out of their comfort zone. We were often put in situations where we had to remember the information and best practices we had recently learned in class, and react to a new emergency situation with a patient in varying degrees of ‘distress’. Sometimes the patient would be unconscious and requiring immediate CPR, other times they were drunk and couldn’t remember what had happened, all these situations requiring you, the first on the scene, to logically evaluate the situation following the protocol we had discussed. Trying your utmost to not forget any critical pieces of information as you may be greeted with blood, spinal damage, or shouting from confused or hurt patients was a real challenge that eventually our group started to ease into.
Learning how to think critically during emergencies in a wilderness setting should be top priority for any serious outdoor enthusiast.
Wilderness First Responder
As some of us attending this training course often head out into the wilderness on multi-day hikes it was invaluable information, for others who don’t (yet…) spend so much time away from the main roads it was still an incredibly useful course that can be applied to many aspects of life.
Obtaining the knowledge and skills to potentially save a life is admirable, all those who attended this course put four straight days of their life on hold with the idea that perhaps one day they may find themselves in a position to assist/save an injured person.
Be the person in the know.
Our 2021 WAFA and WFR course dates are now available to book here: