Archive for the ‘International Extreme Medicine’ Conference’ Category

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EWM’s Wild Medicine Course Changed our Lives

We know that education opens doors and as the EWM crew are both interested and a bit nosey, we love to hear what our alumni get up to after attending our courses.  Naturally then, we were delighted to hear from Ian P, who told us he and his wife loved the  2013 Wild Medicine course so much, they’re busy packing up in the UK and moving to Namibia…

Not many things you can say that change your life!  Attending the Wild Medicine course was one of those events.  Amazing set of people and a fantastic opportunity to learn about conservation and desert medicine.  

The kind of odd things we learnt…
- Take blood from a cheetah,
- Learn about (and touch – optional) many poisonous snakes,
- Sleep in a desert,  walk 14km through a dry river canyon,
- What are the problem animals with Rabies? (A: Kudu),
- How can carnivores live outside conservation areas & not get killed by farmers &

- How to build a vineyard in a desert … what?!.. 

And the thing that changed our lives? Meet the Bushmen and see their need for healthcare!  My wife and I are volunteering at Naankuse to run the Bushmen medical services. The real thing we learned? There are many people out there that can benefit from our skills … 

Oh and by the way Namibia is amazing you get to see loads … but you can also get a 4×4 and do a week or so trip before the course.


Other courses of interest:
Remote Medicine
Extreme Medicine Conference

This years Wild Medicine Course


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Extreme Medicine 2013 – to the delegates

Extreme Medicine 2013

We hope that you enjoyed our inaugural conference in the US as much as we did! What an amazing week topped off by the Red Sox winning the World Series (some of us might have questioned how it can be a world series when there aren’t any international teams but that’s just us!!)

Below you will find a link to an online survey where you can feed back to, we would really appreciate it if you could take the time to let know your views and its essential if you want to claim CME and FAWM points for the conference and pre conference workshop

Extreme Medicine ’14

26-29 October 2014

Next years location is still a bit up in the air …London … Abu Dhabi … London but the dates are confirmed so make sure your free!

Details for be confirmed by December 2013
We have a new website address, please make sure you bookmark it! 

New Course Launch

Remote Medicine and Glacier Safety Skills led by Dr Luanne Freer 10 CME

01 September 2014 to 06 September 2014
Join us on a 6 day CME accredited Wilderness Medicine and Glacier Safety Skills course set in stunning southern Iceland led by Dr Luanne Freer.

Dr Freer is the Medical Director of Yellowstone National Park, ex President of the Wilderness Medical Society and subject of the documentary ‘Everest ER’ which features her work running the field hospital at Everest Base Camp

Find out more here…

Our charities

If you would like to stay in contact with Child in Hand, Extreme Medicine’s 2013 charity partner, please find their website here

Everest ER, beneficiary of income from theEWM Mountain Medicine course in Nepaleach year, can be found here…

What are our team up to?

Dr Paul Auerbach is leading our Antarctic Wilderness Medicine Conference aboard the National Geographic Explorer in 2014 and we invite you to join him on what promises to be an amazing experience - click here to find to find out more

If you are free in couple of weeks to travel to Galapagos you be able to hear from the inspiring EverestER founder Dr Luanne Freer as she is leading our conference aboard the National Geographic Endeavour for a trip departing the 28 November, its last minute but if you are free read more here…  might you also be tempted by a remote medicine and glacier skills course in Iceland?? See here for more…

Dr Amy Hughes EWM’s medical director is in the Philippines leading the UK’s national response to the tragedy unfolding there and also our next Expedition Medicine course in England -find out more here…

Conference Book Deal

Paul Auerbachs iconic book ‘Wilderness Medicine’ is offered to you at a conference only discount just use this code at your point of purchase fromElsevier at the website here…

‘Quickly and decisively manage any medical encountered in the great outdoors! Proven, practical guidance for effectively diagnosing and treating the full range of emergencies and health encountered in the wilderness makes this an indispensable resource for rescuers, first responders,and treating physicians!’

Use promotional code DM53394 to SAVE 10% on this title

Please let us know how we did and complete to claim you CME points…

Click here to take survey

Please make sure you make it to the bottom of the survey as there are a couple of questions you need to answer.

Thank you for reading our news!

If you require any further information on any of our courses or how you can get invovled please contact us.

Email or
Call us on +44 (0)1234 766778



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Amazing Pre conference workshop for Extreme Medicine 2012

Pre confer workshop for Extreme Medicine 2013 from Expedition & Wilderness Medicine on Vimeo.

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‘David Weil Extreme Medicine Award’ (DWEMA) winners announced!

The ‘David Weil Extreme Medicine Award’ (DWEMA) and is by invitation only however, nominations of worthy candidates are welcome for the 2014 Extreme Medicine Conference which will take place at the Royal Society of Medicine in London 26 – 29 October 2014.

To nominate please contact Mark Hannaford, Managing Director, Expedition & Wilderness Medicine;

The Extreme Medicine Conference which this year is taking place at the end of this month at Harvard Medical School funding to two medics to attend under a sponsorship arrangement has been provided.

The sponsorship scheme was set up to enable worthy medical candidates, who otherwise might not be able to afford, to attend the conference.  The learning’s would then be applied to medicine provided in extreme, front line, disaster & relief environments and in turn relieve suffering and advance medical care in the situations where typically treatment would be lacking. The award also serves to promote new qualified individuals who show great promise in the area of disaster, humanitarian and remote medicine.

David is a Hong Kong/ London based entrepreneur who is passionate about using his resources to make positive social change and has supported EWM for a number of years and he has offered to cover the following expenses;

  • Travel & expenses from your home to the conference and return
  • Food & Accommodation whilst at the conference
  • Free entry to both the Pre Conference workshop running on the preceding weekend and the Conference itself
  • Winners  have the right to call yourself joint-winner of the 2013 David Weil Extreme Medicine Award to use the conference logos and branding in an appropriate manner

This years winners are;

Dr Anushavan VirabyanDWEMA winner - Anushavan Virabya

Dr. Anushavan Virabyan is the Vice Chairman for Disaster and Emergency Medicine at Yerevan State University in Armenia. He is a practicing Cardiologist and Emergency Physician with more than 35 years’ experience. He completed his medical training in 1979 and has specialized in pre-hospital medicine during his career. Dr. Virabyan is married with two children and is fluent in Armenian, Russian, and English. He currently lives in Yerevan Armenia.

He was announced as the best emergency physician in 2013 by the Ministry of Health of Armenia.

Dr. Virabyan became an Emergency Physician at No. 5  Ambulance sub-station, Yerevan Armenia in 1979 and rapidly rose to become a Cardio-Reanimatologist in 1981, and then Chief of that station in 1991. He remains in that position today. The Yerevan city ambulance service responds to nearly 600 ambulance calls per day in and around that capital city. Ambulance station No. 5 is one of the largest stations in the city.

In 1994 Dr. Virabyan became Director of the Emergency and Disaster Medicine Regional Training Center, a jointly sponsored program between the University of Massachusetts Medical School, Boston University School of Medicine, the American International Health Alliance (AIHA), and the Armenian Ministry of Health. This center served as the first and the model for a system of centers that grew to number 16 throughout the former Soviet Union. Under Dr. Virabyan’s direction the center grew to serve all of Armenia in Emergency Medical Services (EMS), Emergency Medicine, and Disaster Medicine training. As the first and model center for the AIHA network of training centers, Dr. Virabyan’s center received numerous awards and accolades for cutting-edge Emergency and Disaster training. From 1994-2002, the center trained nearly 10,000 students and hosted a number of international conferences and training sessions. Under the leadership of Dr. Virabyan, the Yerevan center became the flagship center of the American International Health Alliance network, and was featured prominently in its advertisements and website.

Dr. Anushavan Virabyan continues to serve Armenia as one of its leaders in the medical field, and a pioneer in the fields of Emergency and Disaster Medicine. He has written over 20 published papers and continues to teach young medical students and residents. He was recently appointed Vice President of the Armenian Ambulance Association and helps to drive policy through that position. Armenian history will show that through Dr. Anushavan Virabyan’s forward thinking and advanced training programs, he pioneered the establishment of the fields of Emergency Medicine and Disaster Medicine, revolutionizing the way Emergency care is provided in that country.


Sam MoodyDWEMA winner

Sam was born in London and lived in Essex, enjoying a life in Music during school and college there. He made the decision to enter medicine late and now studies at the University of Manchester, after completing a foundation year for widening access. He is currently fourth year.

Last year he took a year out and intercalated, gaining a BSc in Tropical Disease Biology from the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine. Although his research focus was on the laboratory growth of filarial parasites, it was there he found a way to begin accessing the sphere of humanitarian medicine, and could begin to further his interest in the structure of humanitarian response and disaster/tropical medicine. He is currently helping to organise a conference on Health in Humanitarian Settings at the LSTM, and is beginning research with members of the HCRI in Manchester. He hopes to enter the world of humanitarianism after FY1/FY2 years.


Extreme Medicine Conference, Royal Society of Medicine LondonExtreme Medicine Conference, Harvard University Boston

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Extreme Medicine Conference App – download now!

Boston Extreme Medicine Conference AppBoston Extreme Medicine appVery excited! Extreme Med Conference app now ready for download!!

The International World Extreme Medicine Conference and Expo 2013 will host some of the very best speakers from around the world, who are amongst the leading figures in remote extreme medicine fields, including expedition and wilderness, pre-hospital, disaster, and relief medicine. Alongside the daily lecture series will be exhibitions from focused industry leaders, showcasing products and services to meet your extreme medicine needs.

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World Extreme Medicine Conference ’13 – social feeds

Check out the social media feeds for the Extreme Medicine Conference;

World Extreme Medicine Conference

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Extreme Medicine speaker featured in Outside Magazine

Dr Luanne Freer, leader of Expedition & Wilderness Medicines Mountain Medicine CME & FAWM course in Nepal and speaker at the 2013 Extreme Medicine Conference at Harvard Medical School, is featured in Outside Magazine…

THURSDAY, MAY 17, 2012


This is shaping up to be one of the deadliest seasons on record, with 10 deaths so far and too many helicopter evacuations to count. Here’s a sneak peak at the doctors on the front lines of the world’s highest clinic.


Photograph: Freer in front of the Everest ER tent. Photo: Grayson Schaffer
Editor’s Note: The Everest 2012 season is shaping up to be one of the deadliest on record. So far, 10 people have died either on Everest or by injuries sustained on Everest. (For comparison, 15 people perished in 1996, the deadliest year to date. (The tragedies of that season having been famously chronicled by Jon Krakaeur in Into Thin Air.) More recently, 11 climbers died in 2006.

Not surprisingly, this has been one of the busiest seasons on record at the Everest Emergency Room, the clinic at Base Camp that Dr. Luanne Freer founded 10 years ago. In late April, when Schaffer first spoke with Freer and her staff, they had already seen over 200 people. Since then, the number of patients has risen to roughly 500, many of whom were seriously injured or sick—there have been so many helicopter evacuations this year that they’ve lost track. There are multiple flights each day, both medical and non-medical, that Freer’s staff doesn’t necessarily hear about. In the aftermath of this latest disaster, there were seven evacuations from Camp II (and up to 6,700-meters) alone.

Below, Schaffer speaks with Freer about the difficulties of operating the world’s highest clinic and the top five reasons people come in for a visit.It’s been 10 climbing seasons since an idealistic emergency room doc from Bozeman, Montana, first set up a clinic at Everest Base Camp. Since then, Luanne Freer, now 54, has grown her non-profit to include three doctors and a two-cot platform tent that is, if not quite space-age, a lot more comfy than everything else in camp.When she began, Freer spent the off-season raising money to support her operation—the main focus of which is to offer health care for the Sherpas and other local staff who might not otherwise receive quality care in camp. While she still spends the off-season fundraising, Freer now (with the help of some local contacts) cajoles and coerces roughly 75 percent of the commercial Everest operators to pay $100 per climber for her services. If an entire expedition signs up for coverage, all of the local staff are covered for free.

“We’re happy to see climbers,” says Freer, “but in the end, the thing that makes our hearts warm is seeing the little cooks and the Sherpas.”This year has been especially busy for the ER staff, which also includes Dr. Rachel Anderson, 33, of Manchester, England, and the organization’s first Nepalese doc, Ashish Lohani, 27. Within the first three weeks of the season—when we spoke—the ER had already seen 220 patients and overseen roughly a dozen helicopter rescues, more evacuations than in all of 2011. They’ve also seen some rare maladies, including two cases of deep vein thrombosis, an ischemic foot (no oxygen supply, though not frostbite related), a 33-year-old who had a stroke in the ER, and a trekker who’d suppressed her altitude headaches with narcotics and ended up with cerebral edema by the time she reached Base Camp.

In the 10 years that the clinic has been in operation, the biggest change is probably the new ubiquity of helicopters. Freer explained that climbers have always had rescue insurance, but it used to be that helicopters were incredibly scarce in Nepal. In some years, the only option for rescue was a military-owned, Russian-built Mi-8.

“Now we have these big machines,” says Freer, “and heli companies that are competing for the business.” Freer admits that she does sometimes feel under pressure to authorize helicopter evacuations in questionable cases and that she’s sometimes overridden by a climber’s personal physician back home.

“We have an ethical issue,” she says “You have to be reasonable. There was a guy down in Pheriche who wanted to call a helicopter because he had a sinus infection—you have to put your foot down somewhere.”

What Ails You
Here, Freer and Anderson explain the top five reasons people darken their tent flap

1. Khumbu Cough, aka high altitude cough: It’s a little bit controversial in the medical climbing community. There are some people who feel like it’s sub-clinical high-altitude pulmonary edema. “They’re not hypoxic yet, they’re not leaking yet, but it’s pulmonary pressure that causes it,” says Freer. “I’m not in that camp. I believe it’s the extremely dry air—relative humidity is four-five percent here—combined with the cold and it just cracks the bronchial tree.”

2. Viral Respiratory Infection, aka the common cold: Somebody who has a bacterial infection usually has a fever, though you can still get a fever with viral infections. Coughing up a lot of green stuff is usually a sign of bacterial infections. When you listen to the chest, you can hear it. Our bodies have a harder time fighting off illness at high altitude, and we’ve got a really impatient community here. “They want to be fixed in 24 hours with a tablet,” says Anderson. “They’ll say ‘I’m going up tomorrow, gimme the best thing you’ve got.’ And unfortunately, we have to tell them: You’ve got a cold. What would you do at home if you had a cold? We’re sensitive to it, but it gets frustrating.”

3. Gastritis: ”It’s more prevalent among the native population,” says Freer. We’re not talking about infection, this is inflammation of the stomach lining that causes pain—acid reflux. With hypoxia from the altitude, the stomach lining doesn’t get as much oxygen, either. It can be more serious up here. When you’re doing really hard work, your body has to decide where the oxygen goes. “The muscles and brain always win out,” says Anderson, “and the gut loses.”

4. Infectious Gastritis: The stomach bug. A simple matter of not washing your hands, and not properly treating water and food. Antibiotics are effective against these.

5. Altitude Issues: Periodic breathing, insomnia, acute mountain sickness (AMS), high-altitude pulmonary and cerebral edema (HAPE and HACE). “We know from big studies that at the altitude of Lobuche (16,210 feet), 50 percent of people will develop AMS—headache, dizziness, loss of appetite,” says Freer. What’s different up here is that people are self-selected. Most people who are going to get sick get sick at lower elevations and never make it to Base Camp. And climbers tend to be pretty well tested at altitude. It’s a group that’s self-selected for success.

Expedition & Wilderness Medicine courses of interest…

Meet Luanne at this years Extreme Medicine Conference hosted by the Harvard-Affiliated Fellowship in Disaster Medicine and Emergency Management

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Extreme Medicine Conference – iphone & Android app’s

With the Extreme Medicine Conference due to kick off tomorrow we are pleased to have the Android app ready for you…


For those of you who missed to iPhone app please use this link


Extreme Medicine Conference, London

iPhone Screenshots

iPhone Screenshot 1
iPhone Screenshot 2
iPhone Screenshot 3
iPhone Screenshot 4
iPhone Screenshot 5


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The EWM story you have the book now watch the film!

We have written the book and now we have made the film…

Expedition & Wilderness Medicine and their inspirational CME and FAWM accredited medical training courses ‘taking medicine to the edge’


Share this video via our Facebook Group to be entered into a draw to win the Expedition & Wilderness HandbookEWM handbook

Expedition & Wilderness Medicine facebook page

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Extreme Medicine Conference iphone app launched…

To support the Extreme Medicine Conference at the Royal Society of Medicine in London EWM is happy to announce the launch of its supporting iphone app – download your copy here

Extreme Medicine Conference iphone app

Extreme Medicine iphone app

Extreme Medicine iphone app download



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