Human Factors in Space

Following Major Tim Peake’s rerun to Earth we caught up with Dr Nathan Smith,  whose interests focus on psychology in extreme conditions, to ask how we can benefit from understanding human factors in such challenging circumstances. Here’s what he had to say.

“Psychology plays a fundamental role in the process of human spaceflight. At all stages, from selection and preparation, to the mission itself, and the post-flight phase, psychology is embedded within the space experience. Selection committees consider factors such as personality and motivation in order to select-out candidates who are not deemed suitable for space missions. During the mission, the extent to which a person can withstand stressors, whether that be danger, monotony, and boredom, has implications for crew safety, health and performance. Equipping individuals with appropriate coping strategies and developing countermeasures to mitigate stress is an obvious priority area for the various space agencies. In the post-flight phase, the transition back to day-to-day life on Earth is expected to hold both benefits and challenges to space travellers, and as such is an important consideration for retaining a healthy and functional crew. Of course, space research is invariably multi-disciplinary and the importance of human factors should not be underestimated. Ensuring optimal human interaction with equipment, and providing comfort within the restricted habitat are pertinent to maintaining performance and psychological health during ever-lengthening missions. Indeed, there is a lot we can learn from psychological research in space and associated analogs. Understanding the type of person who is likely to adjust and function well in the challenging environment of space, may tell us more about the people who are likely to thrive in difficult Earthly environments. This could be people completing expeditions in the higher latitudes and the Greater Ranges, or those having to enter dangerous and dynamic situations in the name of medicine and humanitarian issues.”

 

Nathan is based at the School of Health at the University of Northampton and his research revolves around understanding the utility of analogue environments for the selection of personnel for operating in extreme conditions, specifically, with a focus on personality, stress, coping, and post-expedition adjustment (particularly on growth experiences). He’s recently completed a 48-day hyper-arid 4-man desert expedition as well as from a field study in Antarctica.

Share

Being a doctor just became the most exciting career on earth…

At Extreme Medicine we are all about opening doors, building networks and presenting the opportunities for you to use your medical degree to make it the most powerful qualification in the world.

Join us for our conference in the amazing city of Edinburgh in November – it’s like no other conference you’ve ever been to.

extrememedicineexpo.com/speakers/

Being a doctor just became the most exciting career on earth… from World Extreme Medicine on Vimeo.

Share

Fiji – Medical Location Work

Working with CBS Survivor in Fiji – its alway nice to have a little bit of helicopter time, WEM Founder Mark Hannaford & Medical Director Dr Joe Rowles caught on camera!

“We contracted a large medical team made up of doctors, paramedics and nurses through World Extreme Medicine Limited for our 6 month remote location shoot in Fiji and we couldn’t be happier. The team from the top down were extremely professional and easy to deal with at all levels of the operation. Ultimately our number one concern is the health and safety of our cast and crew and at all times it felt we were in extremely capable hands. From a logistics and production standpoint we also really appreciate the professionalism and “can do” attitude these guys bring to the table. They are a real pleasure to work with and I hope to continue our relationship with EWM for many years to come.”

Jesse Jensen – Co-Executive Producer  – US SURVIVOR

Share

URGENT – ZIKA FIELD RESEARCH – EPIDEMIOLOGIST AND ENTOMOLOGIST REQUIRED

WEM faculty Dr Alexander Kumar seeks either of the following self-funded scientists who might be interested to join a research collaboration and join our field trip to investigate Aedes mosquitoes and Zika Virus (ZIKV) among conducting other Arbovirus research onsite in Brazil from July 3rd to 16th.

(1) Entomologist (preferred Aedes mosquito knowledge/ experience)

And

(2) Epidemiologist (preferred infectious/ tropical diseases interests)

English language skills are essential.

If you are interested AND available from July 3rd to 16th 2016 (there is no flexibility in dates) please send a photo of yourself, a single page CV and brief paragraph outline about where you are based (institution/ country) and what areas in research you specialise/ are interested in, before deadline midnight Sunday 12th June.

Please email these to: ak482@student.le.ac.uk

Please feel free to circulate among friends and colleagues who may be interested.

Thank you

Dr Alexander Kumar
NIHR Academic Clinical Fellow in Infectious Diseases

Share

US Survivor chooses WEM as its location medical providor..

With ‘Dr Joe’ Rowles appearing on the Live Show in LA we can Location medical servicesannounce that WEM has been brought in to provide high quality, effective and professional medical cover to their overseas filming in Fiji.

“We contracted a large medical team made up of doctors, paramedics and nurses through Expedition and Wilderness Medicine Limited for our 6 month remote location shoot in Fiji and we couldn’t be happier. The team from the top down were extremely professional and easy to deal with at all levels of the operation. Ultimately our number one concern is the health and safety of our cast and crew and at all times it felt we were in extremely capable hands. From a logistics and production standpoint we also really appreciate the professionalism and “can do” attitude these guys bring to the table. They are a real pleasure to work with and I hope to continue our relationship with EWM for many years to come.”

Jesse Jensen – Co-Executive Producer  – US SURVIVOR

Medicine on location image image

 

 

 

Share

Extreme Medicine Masters, PGcert, PGdip launched with University of Exeter Medical School

World Extreme Medicine is delighted to announce the official launch of its global first ‘Extreme Medicine’ Academic programme in a unique collaboration with Russell Group University of Exeter.

OverviewExtreme Medicine Academic Programme

This unique Masters programme is delivered in partnership between the University of Exeter Medical School and World Extreme Medicine, the world’s leading provider of specialist training courses for medics taking their skills into challenging environments.

The programme’s hallmarks are the practical skills, knowledge and understanding needed to perform at the highest possible level in the field of extreme medicine. Key features are the residential locations of the courses across the UK, and environment specific modules located in mountain, jungle, desert and polar regions. This is medicine at its best, crossing geographical and professional boundaries.

You will be likely to work with the wider healthcare community – paramedics, nurses, doctors, and military medics. You will be working or looking to work in situations of rapid change and uncertainty and you will be looking to demonstrate capabilities that extend beyond clinical competence into areas such as leadership, communications, teamwork, resilience, humanitarian relief, planning and logistics The programme’s foundations are rooted in the core values of collaboration, challenge, community, impact and rigour, embedded firmly within the University’s mission to make the exceptional happen, by challenging traditional thinking and defying conventional boundaries.

The programme is delivered part time over three years leading from the Post Graduate Certificate in Extreme Medicine in year one to the full Post Graduate Masters qualification in year three.
Find out more on the university website…

Share

Polar Injury world expert Professor Chris Imray reviews our popular Polar Medicine course in @adventuremedics

WEM Polar Medicine Course

Chris Imray / March 2016, Alta, NorwayWilderness Medicine in Polar Environments

The radio crackled into life again:

‘I think her name is Heidi. Over’

‘Well she’s not responding- we dug her out of the avalanche fifteen minutes ago and despite starting CPR we are getting no output. Over’

‘Did she have an air pocket around her mouth when you extricated her? Over’

‘No-Over’

‘Are you certain? Over’

‘ In which case, I am afraid she is not going to make it- I think you should call this and concentrate on the others. Over’

This was the radio coms on the last day of the World Extreme Medicine Polar Medicine Course outside Alta in Norway this year. Nine candidates from Europe, North America and Australia had met up to take part in this long running and successful course. Their backgrounds varied from paramedic, junior doctor, hospital consultant to GP. All came with a particular reason for wanting to do the course. One individual had wanted to spend the night in a snow cave since he was in his teens (30 plus years ago) and another had just got a job as a base medic with the British Antarctic Survey (BAS).

The Faculty was headed up by Andy Leivers, who is a mountain leader with very extensive alpine and arctic experience.  Matt Edwards, an Emergency Department SPR, who has spent a couple of seasons in the Antarctic with BAS was in charge. They were supported by Mike Cole, an Emergency Department Advanced Nurse Practitioner, who has also spent a number of seasons in the far south with Antarctic Logistics and Expeditions, and me, a vascular surgeon with both altitude and cold experience.

Everyone flew into the coastal town of Alta, the most populous (10,000) town in Finnmark and at 69° 58′ 36″ N is well inside the Arctic Circle. After travelling about an hour south to of Alta, we reached the small traditional hotel set in a remote location.  We were looked after superbly by Maj Lis and her great team.

The course is very much a hands on course and on the first day, after less than an hour covering the basics of hypothermia and frostbite, we were all outside. The immersive nature of the course carries on throughout week, gradually building the candidates knowledge and competence. Brief and focused lectures are given inside and these are followed by reinforcement with outside practical field experience.

Travel by foot, ski, snowshoe, skidoo and dog sled are all experienced and we spent half a day on each.  Local expert Knut oversaw/supervised/helped/cajoled us all, but his input really made the experience all the more memorable for all of us.  The polar expertise is incrementally built so that by the end of the week everyone participates in a mini-expedition involving a night ski/snow shoe to a remote camp. The night was spent out under canvas in sub-zero temperatures was a high point for many. The following day was spent experiencing what its like to live in these super-low temperatures. Part of the day was spent digging snow holes in preparation for our last night out within the Artic Circle which was deep in a snow hole.

Weather during the course was good but cold. We experienced temperatures as low as -27C during the day but fortunately visibility was mainly good and winds low. However, as a result of this particularly harsh spell of weather, Knut was unable to saw through the >1.2 metres thick ice and so the cold water immersion scenario planned for the final day had to be a theoretical scenario rather than a practical one. There was a certain amount of relief expressed by some!

For me there were a number of highlights, including spending time with the indigenous Sami people and hearing how they are adapting to modern Arctic life. We spent a while with a reindeer herdsman who was (with others in his family) moving 17,000 reindeer with skidoo and equipped with a mixture of state of the art protective gear and traditional knives and headwear.

The Northern Lights were visible on a couple of evenings and were as spectacular as I had been lead to believe. A long exposure (about 30seconds) is required to get reasonable photos, and with such low temperatures this can be challenging.

As ever spending time in the company of like-minded wilderness enthusiasts, both candidates and faculty, during the course and relaxing in the evening is a special experience.

Bring on next year!

Polar Medicine in both Norway and New Zealand is organised by World Extreme Medicine.

Share

Making the Move with Head Medical

Our friends at Head Medical are organising a free seminar in London for Doctors looking to work in Australia or New Zealand – Saturday 21 May from 09.30HeadAus

“Making the Move”
Head Medical are delighted to invite you to a FREE seminar for Doctors considering ‘Making the Move’ overseas.

Topics covered will include visa application, medical registration, job opportunities, financial matters, and more.

You’ll also have the opportunity to ask your own questions

during an interactive Q&A session.

Register today as places will be taken fast!

Contact Head Medical now on +44 (0)131 226 2200 or via events@headmedical.com

Boarding Pass BA with Details TRANS

 

Share

New WEM T-Shirts…

Hot odd the press …

We’re finalising a few details and expecting our final samples in the next week.

Four awesome designs will be available across all sizes for in both men’s and women’s fittings. Whether you’re heading to the pub or out on an adventure out t-shirts will be suitable for all your adventures.

There’s one favour we ask, take your t-shirts everywhere and send us some pics! We want to see them up mountains, in the middle of the oceans and everywhere in between!

To get your t-shirt in the first run send us your email address here.

Share

Incredible course faculty, new WEM clothing and more!

Extreme Medicine

GLOBAL • EXPLORATION • SPACE

WEM t-shirts are on their way

We’re finalising a few details and expecting our final samples in the next week.

Four awesome designs will be available across all sizes for in both men’s and women’s fittings. Whether you’re heading to the pub or out on an adventure out t-shirts will be suitable for all your adventures.

There’s one favour we ask, take your t-shirts everywhere and send us some pics! We want to see them up mountains, in the middle of the oceans and everywhere in between!

To get your t-shirt in the first run send us your email address here.

Zika Virus Challenge Grant

The Brazilian-Israeli-British team raised over $29,000 USD and just won the $10,000 International Zika Virus Challenge Grant, to develop a rapid diagnostic test for Zika.

Congratulations to the Zika Innovation team in Brazil including EWM Faculty, Dr Alexander Kumar

“It’s been very hard seeing and hearing stories first-hand from mothers and families whose lives have been affected by the Zika virus. A test that is reliable and affordable, but is not complicated in that it could be performed by a twelve year old, living in a resource limited setting, is a potential game changer for doctors and patients worldwide.”

Nick Bird to lead Dive Medicine!

Following Dr Nick Bird’s fantastic presentation at Extreme Expo ’15, he will now be leading the delivery of CME content on our stunning Diving & Marine Medicine course in Raja Ampat this September.

Nick currently holds two positions at Duke University, he’s a Board Member at the Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society and Regional Medical Director at Duke Urgent Care. Prior to this Nick has an impressive background which includes CEO of Divers Alert Network (DAN).

This course is a truly once in a lifetime opportunity. For more information get in touch.

Pre-hospital Trauma

The pre-hospital environment can push medics out of their comfort zone and offers incredibly rewarding work.

With no two situations the same, decision making is challenged and situational awareness is key.

Join our Pre-hospital Trauma Care workshop this May and enhance your current skills or simply introduce yourself into this challenging area of medicine.

Intensive Care Medicine

Free evidence-based ICM courses at the Harefield Hospital in London, run by NHS Consultant for NHS trainees.

If this sounds like your kind of thing click HERE for more information.

Share