Meet the Team
Alex Janzen Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Alex is our communications man on the Expedition Medicine team and has attended a number of Expedition Medicine courses. He is a communications specialist and a senior officer in the Royal Marines and works as a freelance guide for Across the Divide Expeditions. He has been guiding in South Africa, Namibia and China in addition to his work commitments in the Middle and Far East, Iraq and Afghanistan, West Africa and the Arctic. Whilst not medically trained, Alex has combat medical experience from Iraq, West Africa and Afghanistan.
Alex Kumar Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Based in UK, Alex has lived, worked and travelled through over 70 countries and is an experienced expedition medic to remote areas of the world.
After wriggling free from the restriction of his school years, he spent the next year living in Nepal teaching English. He later graduated with a Medical Degree from Guy’s, King’s & St. Thomas’ in London, following numerous medical placements including in India, Israel, Shetland and the Amazon. He also holds a first class honours degree in International Health.
Fascinated by life in the Polar Regions from a young age, he followed his heart to the Canadian Arctic, where he completed his dissertation conducting the first piece of research on HIV among Inuit.
Alex travelled to Antarctica and spent around one year (2012) living at Concordia, a joint French-Italian inland Antarctic research station as the Human Spaceflight Research MD to conduct research for the European Space Agency in an attempt to understand how far human physiology and psychology can be pushed towards a future manned mission to Mars.
Living and over-wintering as the only British national among a team of 13 Europeans in the most extreme and remote environment on the planet, enduring over 3 months of complete 24-hour darkness, alongside the world’s coldest temperatures dropping down below minus 80 degrees Celsius, the crew survived in complete isolation with no means of escape for 9 months- simulating life on the surface of another planet. More can be found on his blog titled Planet Concordia.
Later working with Dr Mike Stroud, Alex developed the White Mars human science space analogue study for Sir Ranulph Fiennes’ Coldest Journey, which attempted the first land crossing of Antarctica during winter.
Alex is also a speaker at the Extreme Medicine Conference.
See his TEDx talk here....
Alex Rowe Medical Director - EWM courses
Dr Alex Rowe is WEM's Medical Director and clinical lead for the MSc in Extreme Medicine delivered in colloboration with the University of Exeter.
Alex qualified as a doctor in 1994 and is now a GP in South Devon. Before general practice he worked in anaesthetics and emergency medicine.
He started rock climbing and mountaineering as a teenager and since then has travelled extensively to Iceland, North America, South East Asia, Africa, and Europe. He has worked as medic on many overseas trips for charity challenges, including summiting Kilimanjaro three times.
Alex is a helmsman and navigator on the RNLI Torbay Lifeboats and has experience in search and rescue, communications and performing pre hospital medicine in austere environments. The lifeboat work was a progression from his background in offshore sailing.
Alex enjoys using his spare time walking, mountaineering, back country skiing and trekking, mountain biking and open water swimming.
Andrew Peacock Expedition Medic
Andy McAlea Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Andy was born and went through high school / college in Salford and then went onto Liverpool Medical School. Andy has now been qualified for 15 years during which time has worked in various hospitals in Medicine, Ophthalmology, A + E and Anesthetics. He is currently dividing his time between general practice and the local minor injuries unit.
Holder of BLS, ATLS and PHTLS certificates, Andy has also spent 18 months working in New Zealand, been a Ships Doctor on a transatlantic yacht race and is the Team Doctor for the Penrith Mountain Rescue Team as well as an examiner for the Lake District mountain rescue teams. He travelled as an expedition doctor with Across the Divide Expeditions to Nepal, Patagonia, Namibia, South Africa, Chilie and Peru. Recent trips have included Iceland and Greece to teach mountain rescue medicine, an off road cycle across the centre of Iceland and a trip to climb Mont Blanc and experience the delights of acute mountain sickness. Andy's interests include winter climbing, mountain biking, photography and mountain medicine.
Ben Cooper Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Ben has worked in the Accident and Emergency Department in Sheffield for over 11 years and is an A&E Department Charge Nurse and an Emergency Nurse Practitioner.
Ben’s pre hospital care career started 15 years ago when he started as an aspirant for Northumberland National Park Search and Rescue Team, he then moved to Sheffield in 1994 and joined Edale Mountain Rescue Team: one of Britain’s busiest.
In 2001 he started working for Poles Apart as a location medic, assisting in providing film/TV location safety and medical support in extreme environments including Greenland and Iceland. Since 2004 his pre hospital career went south to Antarctica with Antarctic Logistics and Expeditions (ALE). ALE's field camp at Patriot Hills is home to one of the world's most remote field hospitals. From there he has helped to provide medical and rescue cover to expeditions skiing to the South Pole, climbing Mount Vinson, running the Antarctic Marathon and 100km race alongside escorting clients on flights to the South Pole.
Ben Major Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Ben is an adventurer, explorer and survival expert who has led numerous expeditions and projects throughout the world in all environments – jungle, desert, arctic, mountain and ocean.
For the past 8 years Ben has been presenting the multi-BAFTA winning series Serious Explorers for BBC1, leading groups of teenagers on the expedition of a lifetime to remote and far flung corners of the globe achieving four world firsts. As well as leading the group and presenting the programme, Ben is responsible for all the planning, recceing and safety of each new series. He has also consulted on series such as Tribe, Human Planet, Frozen Planet, Last Man Standing, Extreme Dreams, Adrenaline Junkie and various Sport Relief Challenges.
Having travelled extensively in remote and often hostile environments Ben consults on security and travel issues in between expeditions and TV work and has built up an impressive list of clients including the BBC and CNN advising on security issues while in countries such as Yemen, Iraq, Colombia and Afghanistan.
Ben joined Sandhurst after finishing school and served in the army for 9 years where he spent time in Northern Ireland and Bosnia. An accomplished mountaineer and polar adventurer, Ben led expeditions to the Arctic, Antarctic, Himalayas, Rockies and Andes including ascents of two 8000m peaks. Upon leaving the army he planned and led security operations to protect wildlife against professional poachers in Central and East Africa developing his love for camels; built eco-lodges and safari camps in Africa and led remote jungle conservation projects where he honed his survival skills amongst the native peoples of Asia, Central and South America.
Burjor Langdana, Expedition Dentistry Lecturer Expedition Dentistry Lecturer
Burjor is one of the consultant dentists for the British Antarctic Survey Medical Unit, in addition to being the resident expedition dentist for AdventureMedic. Burj has years of experience in Expedition/ Wilderness and Remote Access Dentistry. He gained this interest while running numerous dental camps in remote parts of India (where he did his Masters in Oral Surgery) and while working in the Sultanate of Oman. He gained further experience through supporting 4 seasons in the Antarctic, working as a VSO dentist in Malawi and with Mobile Surgical Services in New Zealand.
He has published numerous articles about this subject in AdventureMedic, and the dental section of the competency guides for remote health care practitioners and expedition medicine. He is also the contributing author and editor for the dental chapter in the new Oxford Handbook of Expedition and Wilderness Medicine. In addition, he has lectured extensively on this subject and supported many expedition medics with phone and email advice.
His main passion these days is to train medics in the dark art of Expedition Dentistry through intensive but interesting hands on workshops
Caroline Knox Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Caroline qualified in Medicine at Newcastle in 1993, and has worked in various specialties, including anaesthetics. A planned six months abroad turned into two and a half years; this included extensive travelling, 2 Raleigh International Expeditions (one as Chief Medic), mountaineering on Mount Cook and a stint with Mount Hutt Ski Patrol in New Zealand.
After a Masters in Sports Medicine Caroline moved to the Lake District to complete her GP training and now works part-time in Keswick. Caroline has been a Expedition Medical Officer with Across the Divide Expeditions on thirteen expeditions in four different continents and in 2004 she was the Medical Officer for the Richard Lander Expedition in Nigeria. She and the Police Expedition Society traced the route of an oft-forgotten British Explorer - Richard Lander: following the River Niger for 700km. Caroline has also lectured for the Newcastle University student-selected Wilderness Medicine module, Liverpool School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine Expedition Medicine Course and the International Mountain Guide qualification at Glenmore Lodge. She is also the Medical Advisor to BSES, British Schools Exploring Society.
Catherine (Caz) Farrow Expedition Medicine Lecturer
A Specialist Registrar in Anaesthetics / Intensive Care in Yorkshire, currently at Leeds General Infirmary, Catherine studied medicine at Cambridge then Oxford University where her main interest was lightweight rowing. Her career has involved emergency and general medicine as well as a year as an anaesthetist in Christchurch, New Zealand, in 2005, where she participated in secondary retrievals for the New Zealand Flying Doctors Service.
In 2004 she successfully completed the UIAA UK Diploma in Mountain Medicine. She has since worked as medic on worldwide charity treks and bike rides. She has climbed and trekked independently all over the world and her main interests are fell & trailrunning, cycling, mountaineering and eating cake!
Ceri Williams Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Ceri’s passions are people and their behaviours. He believes that concentration on great behaviours is the way for all individuals and teams to reach their true potential. Ceri has spent the past 20 years working as a sports and adventure coach, operating on rivers and in mountain ranges throughout the world.
Ceri previously spent 22 years in the Royal Marine Commandos specialising in Physical and Adventurous Training. Alongside his service as a soldier he became a British Canoe Union (BCU) Level 5 Coach, earned the Mountain Leader Training Board (MLTB) Mountain Instructor Award (MIA) and the Winter Mountain Leader Award (ML Winter). Throughout his commando service he spent numerous winters in northern Norway which played to his strengths. Here in the Arctic he gained considerable travel and polar survival experience. During his time with the Royal Marines, Ceri also played representative rugby and squash and was a member of the Great Britain Dragon Boating Team, paddling in two World Championships.
Ceri works now as a professional outdoor coach, a personal and team performance coach and an expedition leader. Together with his outdoor qualifications he is a certified Master Practitioner in Neuro Linguistic Programming and a Master Practitioner in Hypnotherapy and never ceases to be excited by the power of language in all forms of coaching.Ceri’s expedition and corporate work conspire to take him away from home a great deal. Ceri has successfully led trips to Mount Kilimanjaro, Mount Kenya and Mount Kinabalu; crossed the Continental Divide in Costa Rica, trekked the Great Wall of China and spent several weeks dog sledding in Norway. He has led over 40 trips for Across the Divide Expeditions.
Chris Imray Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Chris is a Consultant Vascular Surgeon at UHCW NHS Trust, and is also a Professor at Warwick Medical School. Chris has lectured to Expedition Medicine about frostbite and offers phone or email advice on the subject.Chris started climbing whilst at school and has continued to travel all over the world to fulfill this passion. His altitude research interest began with the Birmingham Medical Research Expeditionary Society, and more recently he has been involved with the UCL team at CASE.Chris took part in the 2006 Xtreme Cho Oyu expedition to Tibet, as one of the medical officers and was the Deputy Climbing Leader of the 2007 Caudwell Xtreme Everest Expedition. He summited both Cho Oyu (8201m) and Everest (8848m) and has the dubious distinction of having the second lowest arterial gases ever recorded in an adult (at 8,400m)!
Chris’s has the Diploma in Mountain Medicine and his mountain medical interests include frostbite, non-freezing cold injuries, extreme altitude physiology and the brain at high altitude. With Dr Paul Richards and Dr Dave Hillebrandt, he runs the UK internet based frostbite service
Chris’s real job is as a vascular/renal transplant surgeon with a particular interest in the management of the high risk carotid patient. His PhD is on the hypoxic and ischaemic brain.
Christoffer van Tulleken Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Chris is currently an academic registrar in Infectious Disease and Tropical Medicine at University College London Hospital and has extensive experience of remote medicine.
A race to the Magnetic North Pole in 2004 lead to an enduring interest in the Arctic. He was the doctor and navigator for a recreation in Greenland of Scott's South Pole expedition filmed with Bruce Parry and has returned several times to the Russian and Canadian Arctic to teach survival, film and do research.
Chris has been the medical consultant and location medic for more than 12 documentary series including BBC's Tribe, Amazon and Human Planet. He has also presented several documentaries about humanitarianism, science and remote indigenous societies.
Filming with remote populations in Congo, Peru and Russia lead to humanitarian work. Chris is a Patron of the medical aid agency Merlin and is also on their Emergency Response Team. He has worked as a Medical Coordinator in emergencies in Burma, Central African Republic and Pakistan.
After many years of climbing Chris was part of the team on the 2008 Caudwell Xtreme Everest Research expedition to Cho Oyu. A trip to Uganda to study worms in chimpanzees lead to his current interest at UCL in primate viruses.
Dave Marshall Pre Hospital Care Specialist
Dave Marshall is a HEMS paramedic working for the past two years with the Helicopter Emergency Medical Service in Kent. He began his medical career with the London Ambulance Service where he gained extensive pre hospital experience and was one of the first crews on scene at the Paddington rail crash. After transferring to Kent in 2004 he has continued to work in a variety of roles and in 2008 set up the county’s first Paramedic Cycle Response Unit.
Dave’s first involvement in Expedition Medicine was as part of the medical team working on the Namibia Ultra Marathon in 2010. Following this he has been involved in a number of UK events, a 400km charity cycle across Cuba and trekked up Mount Kinabalu in Borneo. He has recently been involved in teaching the pre-hospital aspect of expedition and remote medicine.
He lives in North Kent and is married with three young children. His absolute passion is football – both playing and watching.
David Weil World Extreme Medicine Commercial & Strategy Partner
Conference Co-Founder | Across the Divide Partner | World Extreme Medicine Commercial & Strategy Partner | Co-Founder of Extreme Medicine Conference
Companies, Organisations & Non-Profits:
Trustee Royal Marines Charitable Trust Fund (retired) | Founding Trustee Saturday Club Trust – Somerset House | Keeper of the Quaich | Founder FranceVietNam Initiative Non-Profit (early 2017)
In addition to David’s interests as co-founder and partner in the above companies, he is also a Hong Kong based entrepreneur who invests in the UK and abroad; he is involved in retail, property development, manufacturing, warehouse distribution, mentoring, apprentice programmes and while under his watchful eye helped drive a business that resulted in it being honoured in 2010 with two prestigious ‘Queen’s Awards for Enterprise’ (Innovation and International Trade) – David helps raise the profile of British companies by providing strategic know-how, finance and back office support
He was the first foreign and private-sector trustee in the esteemed Royal Marines Charitable Trust Fund and he is also a trustee in The Saturday Club Trust – an inspiring and newly formed national organisation that oversees the provision of programmes that link children ages 14–16 with tutors and students at universities and colleges, and with professionals in their field of expertise so as to complement the national curriculum and develop young people’s talents, life skills and confidence.
David is passionate about his interests in Across the Divide by ensuring Across the Divide continues to help facilitate much needed funds for charity year on year where it is currently standing at having raised nearly £90m since inception.
Across the Divide was the first commercial organisation in the UK to employ doctors, provide comprehensive CME certified training, and to standardise medical kits deployed on all of its events and expedition and significantly lifted the standards of medical care provided by the adventure travel market.
Most recently, he co-founded the ‘Extreme Medicine’ Conference series. Developed specifically with medical professionals in mind, this ground-breaking conference series has been held at the Royal Society of Medicine in London and Harvard Medical School in Boston. The World Extreme Medicine conference challenges thinking, builds bridges and shares new and more effective approaches to medical practice in the world’s most remote and austere locations.
Since 1988, David has been an active investor and entrepreneur in Viet Nam and The Philippines where he was a pioneer in developing various categories of industry in the luxury goods industry and commercial property development.
Denny Levett Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Denny is a Specialist Registrar in Critical Care and Anaesthesia at UCL. She is the Deputy Director of the Centre for Altitude, Space and Extreme Environment Medicine at UCL and has extensive experience in expedition medicine.
Denny has research interests in altitude medicine and diving and hyperbaric medicine and is a keen climber and diver. She was the Expedition medical officer for the Caudwell Xtreme Everest Research Expedition in 2007 responsible for more than 250 climbers, investigators and volunteers in the field. She was also the expedition Deputy Research Leader and is currently completing a phd in altitude physiology.
In 2005, Denny worked as a Diving and Hyperbaric Medicine Fellow at the Alfred Hospital, Melbourne, Australia treating divers with decompression sickness. She has spent nine months working as the expedition medical officer on three marine biology diving expeditions in Africa, Fiji and Oman. Denny has also worked as a doctor for Across the Divide Expeditions since 1999. She has accompanied groups on hiking, white water rafting and mountain biking expeditions in remote locations including Guatemala, Nepal, Patagonia, Lapland and Peru.
Dr Stephen Altmin Medical Lead Aconcagua
Dr. Stephen Altmin has been a Himalayan Rescue Association Physician (HRA) since 2003 having worked at HRA Pheriche in 2003 and HRA Everest Base Camp in 2008. Dr. Altmin is board certified in Emergency Medicine and holds an MPH degree from the University of Sydney, Australia. Currently, Dr. Altmin works as an Emergency Physician in Denver and Summit County, Colorado. When not working he has traveled, studied, or volunteered in over 50 countries.
Eoin Walker Paramedicine Trauma Lead
Eoin Walker is a Pre-Hospital Mass Causality Incident Management Paramedic
He has worked for World Extreme Medicine for 4 years both domestically and internationally teaching on pre-hospital trauma and expedition skills. He has undertaken various global expeditions as an expedition medic. He also works as part of the Mobile Emergency Response Incident Team (MERIT). After responding to the 7/7 bombings in London he works internationally teaching Pre-Hospital Mass Causality Incident Management.
He has progressed through his BSc and MSc in Critical Care and works for UKmed on behalf of WHO. Eoin is currently working as an Advanced Paramedic Practitioner for London Ambulance Service in East London.
Faan Oosthuizen Expedition Medicine - Desert Medicine Namibia
Born and bred in Namibia, Faan is Expedition Medicine's mover and fixer in Southern Africa and Namibia. As he says about himself: ’A stern fella whose smile is only used sparingly but is ever willing to give a hand, likes new and old folks a lot, prefers to do things the hard way and loves to be challenged. Loves Africa and the wilds and loves it even more to spend time with friends and family in places where one could get bitten or worse!"
Greg Mortimer Course Faculty (Australia)
Greg Mortimer, is an Australian mountaineer (born December 10, 1952). Mortimer is most well known as one of the first two Australians (with Tim Macartney-Snape) to successfully climb Mount Everest on 3 October 1984 without oxygen. Their ascent was the first via the North face and Great Couloir and is now one of the established routes used to climb the mountain.
Mortimer was also the first Australian to climb K2 (1990), the first to climb Annapurna II by its south face (1983), the first Australian to climb Antarctica's highest peak, Vinson Massif (1988) and the first to climb Mount Minto in the Admiralty Mountains of Antarctica (1988).
Mortimer trained as a geochemist and geologist, has worked as a survival-training instructor and as a Scientific Affairs Adviser for the New Zealand Antarctic Division. Since 1992 he has led over 80 expeditions to Antarctica, many on a commercial basis with his company Aurora Expeditions.
Mortimer was born in 1952 in Sydney, Australia and grew up around Gladesville and Bondi Junction.
Mortimer is the recipient of a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) and three Australian Geographic Society medals.
James Martin Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Jim has been flying since 1975: he flew Lightning fighters and Chinook helicopters with the RAF until 1990. After a stint carrying bags for a rich chap, he flew as Police Line and Chief Pilot for 13 years then helped set up 4 air ambulance units in North England. He then worked as Chief Pilot of the Cumbria and Northumbria bases until March 2008. As well as extensive helicopter experience he also enjoys being a part time captain on fixed wing repatriation and medical transfer flights.
Jim is also an accredited Lecturer with Teeside University, and runs quarterly week-long Helicopter Crewmember Courses teaching medics how to work with and crew helicopters.
James Yates Expedition Medicine Lecturer
James is a highly trained paramedic who currently works for one of the Hazardous Area Response Teams in the UK. He has extensive knowledge and experience of prehospital care inrcluding the specialist subject of providing a medical response to urban search and rescue situations and chemical, biological and radiological events.
He is also employed by a private company, as a remote care paramedic, providing medical and rescue cover to extreme sports events and is travelling to Borneo at the end of this year to work as an expedition medic with Raleigh International. Along with his paramedic qualifications he holds a BSc (Hons) Physiology and is shortly due to complete a Postgraduate Certificate in Practice Development.
Away from work James will invariably be found in the outdoors, pursuing one of his many sports including cycling, climbing, snowboarding and adventure racing. His passion lies with white-water kayaking though and this has seen him travelling throughout Britain, the European Alps, Canada and New Zealand in pursuit of crystal clear water and big rapids.
Remote Medicine Training
Jamie Phillips Extreme Medicine & Elite Performance Enhancement
Surgeon Commander Jamie Phillips is a Commando-trained Doctor currently serving in the UK Armed Forces. His unique blend of specialist military and medical skills have been honed during a career serving in combat with the Royal Marines and other elite forces.
Having earned the right to wear the coveted green beret, Jamie has spent his career serving as an embedded Commando Medical Officer with specialist military units. Working as part of small skilled medical teams in war zones across the globe he has developed a unique approach to the delivery of pre-hospital emergency medicine. Most recently Jamie commanded a highly specialised medical unit responsible for delivering advance pre-hospital care on contingency and enduring military operations worldwide.
Jamie is also a qualified Strength and Conditioning Coach, drawing on his professional experience of training specialist troops and his personal experience as former professional rugby player to bring a novel approach to the selection and preparation of elite troops for combat. Having identified the potential to enhance the physical and cognitive performance of his 'Warrior Athletes', he has combined his clinical knowledge with top level sports coaching to produce an Elite Performance Enhancement Programme.
Jamie has over a decade of frontline operational experience delivering advanced point of wounding care in the most austere environments on the planet. An accomplished clinician and medical commander, he has a unique insight into the delivery of Extreme Medicine in the Land, Maritime and Counter Terrorism spheres.
John Apps Polar Medicine Course Director New Zealand
John is UK trained GP, with extensive pre-hospital emergency care experienc and heads up our Polar Medicine course in New Zealand, who upgraded to New Zealand 6 years ago, where he has been happily experimenting with self sufficiency on the West Coast of the South Island. He initially worked in rural general practice before transferring to Emergency Medicine at Greymouth.
He has worked eight seasons with Antarctic Logistics and Expeditions (ALE) in Antarctica, plus five Himalayan tours, been the chief MO on the Everest and North Pole marathons, as well as serving with the military in Afghanistan. Last century, he blazed mountain bike routes across Iceland before mountain bikes were invented, was arrested several times in Europe for climbing buildings and worked for a bush air ambulance service on the Labrador coast.
John Ellerton Mountain Rescue Council Medical Officer for Patterdale MRT
John has been Mountain Rescue Council Medical Officer for Patterdale MRT for the past 20 years, and British Representative on the International Council for Alpine Rescue (IKAR) as well as a General Practitioner in Penrith, Cumbria. John elected to work near the mountains and has walked and climbed in the UK for many years.
He started visiting the Alps over 15 years ago and goes both in the summer and winter to indulge in climbing. As one of the Medical Officers for the Patterdale MRT (1985 -) he regularly gets to the sharp end. His particular interests are in hypothermia and monitoring. John has been involved with mountain rescue casualty care development on a national level for 10 years. He co-edited 'Casualty Care in Mountain Rescue'. Published in 2000, it is the standard book for mountain rescue in the UK.
Kathy Wilson Expedition Medicine Lecturer - Dentistry
Kathy qualified in 1986 from Edinburgh Dental School and has worked in Maxillofacial Surgery, the Community Dental Service and Newcastle Dental School and Hospital. Her present role is working with those with Special Needs and in the field of Conscious Sedation for Dentistry. Kathy has always enjoyed travelling and shortly after qualifying worked in Australia for 6 months. She has carried out voluntary dentistry in Nepal, Israel and Africa where basic facilities prevail.
"My professional experience and love of travelling have combined to equip me with the knowledge and skills of providing emergency care in remote environments. My involvement with the Expedition Medicine Team allows me to use engage others in the medical profession in the understanding of the provision of basic emergency dental care."
Mark Hannaford FRGS FRSA Managing Director
Mark is the founding director of Expedition and Wilderness Medicine and Across the Divide Expeditions and a Fellow of both the Royal Geographical Society and the Royal Society of Arts, Mark has been involved with expeditions for over 30 years and has led and organised expeditions to all of the world's continents, both in desert and marine environments but also in both polar regions, at altitude and in the world's most remote corners. Mark is also an award winning photographer with images regularly published in the Sunday Times and Telegraph and National Geographic.
Across the Divide was the first commercial expedition organisation to take salaried medical professionals on all of its expeditions and events which resulted in the founding of World Extreme Medicine.
Mark is the founding director of the World Extreme Medicine Conference a platform for inspiring medical minds to meet, share experiences and promote cross-disciplinary working. The gathering is dedicated to sharing and spreading best practice for the world’s medical professionals, willing to risk themselves to help others. The conference aims stimulates new thinking, extends professional relationships and shares new and more effective approaches to medical practice in challenging environments. The World Extreme Medicine Conference is organised as ‘Not for Profit’ activity by WEM.
He also founded, in a cooperation with Exeter University Medical School the world's first MSc programme in Extreme Medicine. 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.
Though the activites of Across the Divide Mark is proud to have helped in the facilaition of raising over £92 million for varoius charities.
Mark Read (aka 'the croc doc') Jungle Medicine | Diving Medicine
Mark Read is a wildlife biologist based in Australia who specialises in things that bite and have the potential to kill you. One of Australia’s most respected crocodile biologists, Mark has spent 15 years working with these animals in Australia, Papua New Guinea and South Africa. He also has extensive knowledge and experience with snakes and terrestrial and marine venomous and poisonous vertebrates and invertebrates and now specialises in the conservation management of protected species like whales and marine turtles.
He has experience leading expeditions and research teams in remote locations and doing fun things like counting, catching and researching crocodiles and marine turtles and trying to learn more about these misunderstood animals.
Mark joins Expedition Medicine as an course director and lecturer on our Jungle and Diving Medicine Courses and has experience working in Africa, Antarctica, Borneo, the Maldives, Oman, Papua New Guinea and Central and South America.
Martin Rhodes Mountain Medicine Course Director & Expedition Medicine Lecturer
"Doc Martin” recently returned from a trek in Peru where none of the clients could be convinced that he was really a doctor. Others are uncertain whether this is a compliment or not, but he continues to take it as one!
On the basis that to have a career means to rush along in a uncontrolled fashion, his career has included studying law at a minor English university, working as joiner, a language teacher, and for the Foreign Office in Latin America, and (honestly!) training in Paediatrics, A&E and General Practice in the People’s Republic of South Yorkshire.
He is happiest running up and skiing down mountains, and sitting in tents in the Antarctic being brought cups of tea by Ben Cooper, with whom he is joined at the hip, having worked together in the UK as doctor and Deputy Team Leader of Edale Mountain Rescue Team, and on numerous Polar and Alpine expeditions . He hasn’t had a real job for years, but is Chief Medical Officer for Poles Apart and Antarctic Logistics & Expeditions, and runs an outdoor activities and gîte business in the French Pyrenees.
Mike Cole Trauma Nurse specialist, Charge Nurse and Emergency Nurse Practitioner
Mike is a Trauma Nurse specialist, Charge Nurse and Emergency Nurse Practitioner in the Emergency Department at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals where he has worked since 2002.
Brought up in Africa, Mike developed an early interest in the outdoors. Having moved to the UK, pre-hospital work appealed and Mike joined Edale Mountain Rescue Team in 1991, where he continues to enjoy all aspects of MRT work in one of the busiest teams in the UK.
Mike gained early expedition experience crossing the Chalbi Desert and trekking Mt Kenya with BSES. Since qualifying , he has worked as a medic in a range of environments including providing medical and safety cover to several TV productions. In 2006 and 2009 cold climes called and Mike headed south to work as a medic for Antarctic Logistics & Expeditions at their field camp at Patriot Hills in Antarctica.
In 2012 Mike worked as medic on a Kilimanjaro summit trek and in between trips abroad, he has been involved with a variety of challenge and endurance events in the UK. Mike is on the Faculty Team for the Expedition and Wilderness Medicine UK courses and the Polar Medicine course run in Arctic Norway.
Mike Grocott Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Mike holds degrees in Immunology and Medicine from the University of London. He is currently Consultant in Intensive Care Medicine at Southampton General Hospital and Senior Lecturer in Intensive Care Medicine at the Portex Unit, Institute of Child Health, UCL; as well as Honorary Senior Lecturer in high-altitude physiology at UCL; Co-Founder and Director of CASE; and Acting Director of Research and Development at the Whittington Hospital NHS Trust.
Between 2005 and 2008 Mike was the Deputy-Director of the UCL Institute of Human Health and Performance. Mike's research interests include human responses to hypoxia, measuring and improving outcome following high-risk surgery and fluid therapy. He has co-authored more than 60 peer-reviewed scientific publications.
He has been climbing and mountaineering for more than 25 years, has been on 11 high altitude expeditions to the Himalaya and South American Andes (6 as leader) and has extensive remote environment medical experience as medical officer and co-ordinating high altitude medical research projects. Mike led the 2006 Caudwell Xtreme Everest Cho Oyu Expedition and the 2007 Caudwell Xtreme Everest Expedition. He has ascended over 5000m on more than 40 occasions with multiple ascents to, and ski descents from, over 6000m and two ascents of 8000m peaks (Cho Oyu, 8201m, 2006; Everest 8848m, 2007). He is a qualified UK Mountain Leader and is on the Faculty of the UK UIAA Diploma in Mountain Medicine.
In the autumn of 2004 Mike was one of two resident physicians at the Himalayan Rescue Association Aid Post at Pheriche, Everest Base Camp Trek, Nepal.
Mike has been married since Febuary 2006 to Denny Levett who was the Caudwell Xtreme Everest Expedition Medical Officer and one of two Deputy Research Leaders.
Mike Townsend Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Mike Townsend is a writer and lecturer on travel medicine, Honorary Clinical Teacher at the University of Glasgow and Tutor in Travel Medicine at St Martin's College, Lancaster. He is the author of Travel Health for the Primary Care Team and contributor of chapters to other books including Travel Medicine and Migrant Health.
Mike is also a member of the Executive Committee of the British Travel Health Association.
Mike was a GP in Cockermouth for many years and a member of the Cockermouth Mountain Rescue Team. He has participated in several Himalayan expeditions and overland travel through Europe and Asia. He now takes groups abroad involving activities such as trekking and white water rafting, acting as group leader and doctor. These activities take him Europe, North Africa, Nepal, Bhutan, South America and South East Asia.
Neville Howard Expedition Medicine Lecturer
A product of the English public school system, Neville became sufficiently hardened to bad food and arbitrary discipline to join the navy. The navy became aware at about the same time that he did that they were not ideally suited each to the other, following an unfortunate incident involving a chaplain and a stoker.
After a lotus-eating interlude (coal miner, dude ranch hand and Texan wine waiter) he joined the army. Being small, scruffy and unreliable, he proved not to be ideal material for the Coldstream Guards either and, with a barely suppressed mutual sigh of relief following an unfortunate incident with a Japanese tourist, he slid sideways into special forces. His last job was commanding 22 SAS Regiment. He now runs the family estate at Greystoke (or vice versa).
Nick Arding OBE Expedition Medicine Course Leader - Mountain
Nick served as an officer in the Royal Marines for 22 years, travelling and climbing widely during that time. In ‘92 he took part in the British Annapurna 2 Expedition and in ‘93 led his own trip to climb the West Buttress of Mt McKinley in Alaska. He commanded the Royal Marines Commando Training Centre from 2003 to 2005.
In 2003 Nick led a Royal Navy expedition to climb Everest by its North Ridge; not only did they climb the mountain but his team were instrumental in rescuing two other climbers from above 8000m, the highest mountain rescue on record, for which he was awarded the Royal Humane Society Bronze Medal.
A keen rock climber and mountaineer since his teens, Nick holds the Mountaineering Instructor (MI) and International Mountain Leader (MIA) awards. He left the Royal Marines in 2005 to qualify as a teacher and now works as a leadership coach and management consultant. He has led civilian teams to Mongolia, Nepal and the Alps, and when not working can usually be found on a rock face or in a sea kayak! In 2009 Nick took a team of friends to the Rolwaling Valley in Nepal to attempt an unclimbed mountain called Cheki-go. He has close links with this region, having raised funds to sponsor local Sherpas, three of whom have been able to visit the UK to improve their climbing skills and English language.
Pamela Mazoyer Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Paul Richards Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Paul is a General Medical Practitioner and member of the Local Medical Committee in a market town in Essex. A comfortable place to live, but a long way from any mountains, though he does manage to escape regularly to Wales, Cumbria and Staffordshire where climbing enthusiasm compensates for ability.
He runs a Travel Clinic from the practice, specialising in remote or difficult itineraries and is an Honorary Lecturer in Travel Medicine at the Department of Academic Travel Medicine & Vaccines, Royal Free Hospital, UCL, London.
Paul is also a director of Medical Expeditions, a research charity with the remit to promote research and education into high altitude medicine and physiology. Previous research expeditions include Everest in 1994 when two members summited; Kangchenjunga base camp in 1998; and Chamlang base camp in 2003. The charity also organises a yearly 3 day high altitude medicine course, and for the past 4 years, a biannual international research conference held in Oxford.
He is a holder of and faculty member of the Diploma of Mountain Medicine for which he is course organiser for the Expedition Medicine course component. He is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and has contributed to their Expedition Medicine textbook. Other memberships include the International Society of Travel Medicine, Wilderness Medical Society and International Society of Mountain Medicine. Over the last few years he has been on numerous expeditions as diverse as overland desert driving, high altitude mountaineering, tropical rainforest exploration, SCUBA diving or Arctic dog sledding. On many of them he has been the medical officer. Paul has trekked or climbed in numerous countries such as Mexico, Chile, Bolivia, Indonesia, Morocco, Kenya, European Alps and seven visits to Nepal. The latter includes working a season as Staff Physician at the CIWEC Travel Clinic in Kathmandu.
In 2005 he was one of the climbers on the first Caudwell Xtreme Everest pilot expedition to Cho Oyu where he reached 7100m and organised the expedition solar power system.
Piers Carter Course Director
Piers graduated from Birmingham University with a degree in Physical Education, which he then followed up with a PGCE in PE and English. He then joined the West Midlands Police as a civilian trainer. After 12 months delivering training to cadets and police officers, of all ranks, he secured funding from a trust fund to visit America to research teaching methods in the outdoors.The desire for change and challenge took Piers to Chile in 1996 with Raleigh International as a Project Manager, after which he embarked upon freelance career based in the Peak District.
Piers has an unusual string to his bow in the form of conflict management training. Piers is a student of Taiho-jitsu and enjoys socializing, walking, mountain biking, and home growing of veggies. He has been involved in expeditions to Southern Africa, Australia, Cambodia and Arctic Norway and works as an expedition leader for Across the Divide Expeditions.
Rachel Anderson Mountain Medicine Course
Rachel is an Emergency Medicine registrar in the UK who has worked in the expedition environment in Nepal and Antarctica.
She has worked for Everest ER for two seasons as a base camp medic as well as at Union Glacier and the South Pole for Antarctic Logistics and Expeditions. She has recently completed the Diploma in Mountain Medicine (DIMM) and was lead lecturer on a wilderness medical expedition to Aconcagua in 2013.
She is a keen mountaineer and spends time in Scotland, the Alps and at high altitude venues such as the Himalaya. She also has an interest in humanitarian work and has the Diploma in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene and has worked in South Africa. Her next planned trip is to work as part of the mountain rescue team on Denali this summer.
Rob Conway Diving Medicine Medical Specialist
Ever since he was left alone in the bath as a small child Rob has had a fondness for the ocean and an ever-so-little tendency for separation anxiety. He has taken part in over 10 marine based expeditions since 2000 in Madagascar and the Indian Ocean, the Caribbean, South East Asia and the chilly waters of New Zealand and has done so as a research diver, medic and leader that have culminated in awards from Buckingham Palace. He may also be found gliding along the Greenland Ice cap or in Norway and Iceland touring with kites. The most important thing to him, though, is the fact that he can help in his own way to make a substantial difference to protecting the environment as well as the way that humans influence it.
Rob is currently an emergency doctor working in Brighton and Chairman of the Trustees of Blue Ventures Conservation. He has been involved and was an intern for Divers Alert Network, the largest diving medical and safety group in the world. He has an interest in expeditions and has a couple up his sleeve.
In his spare time he can be found kite surfing off the south coast, running along the South Downs Way or (rarely) with his head in his medical books trying to absorb the large amount of information so that he can be a good doctor, and working as an Expedition Medic for Across the Divide.
Roger Alcock Expedition Medicine Course Director & Lecturer
Sally Simmons Diving Medicine
Sally was in the Royal Navy, trained as a nurse in early 80s, went to Falklands in 1982, stayed until 1990, left to get married/have baby (not at same time) and then joined Army (QARANC) as a Nursing officer in 1993 and did 9 yrs with them, finishing off by resigning my commission after 2 tours of Northern ireland to go to the dark side and med school. i learnt to dive in Guernsey (where I was born) at the tender age of 14, and got to BSAC Advanced Diver several centuries ago. Sally has been exped leader on several dive expeds whilst in the services, most notably looking for the wreck of the 4th HMS Victory off the Casquests, Alderney in 1996 (yup - didn't find it). She has also led expeds in Belize to the Blue Hole as a SADs (mil dive supervisor), so have now racked up around 3000 dives. She dives around 50 times a year in UK waters off sunny devon's south coast
She is also the Physician Courses Manager for Diving Diseases Research Centre (DDRC) and organises and is part of the faculty teaching diving doctors internationally. Currently running and teaching an Intro to Hyperbaric Medicine (accredited by UHMS), a DMAC accredited Level I (Fitness to Dive), Level IIa (Dive Accident Management/Competence in Diving Medicine) and an AMED refresher course.
Sean Hudson FAWM Medical Projects Adviser
Sean is a former Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and was the first person in the UK to become a Fellow of the Academy of Wilderness Medicine. He has been involved in a wide variety of expeditions over the last 20 years. During this time he has trekked across the Darien Gap and the Thar Desert; worked as a trekking guide and Chief Medic for Raleigh International in Namibia and Zimbabwe; a trauma medic in Columbia; a ski field doctor in New Zealand and spent a season in the Antarctica for ALE.
In 2004 he became a medical consultant to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and works throughout the Middle East. Since 1998 he has worked for Across the Divide Expeditions as medic and expedition medicine advisor, providing medical cover on expeditions in 21 different countries. In 2002, he co-founded Expedition and Wilderness Medicine, which seeks to provide comprehensive training for medical professionals working as expedition medical officers in a variety extreme and remote environments.
Simon Dalton FAWM Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Simon was born in Tavistock, Devon, but he didn’t hang around for long. At the age of 3 he was off to the rather warmer climes of Fiji, where he spent many happy years. After flitting back and forth between England and New Zealand, he is now based in Christchurch, New Zealand, where he is training in Infectious Diseases and Respiratory Medicine.
He has been involved with Expedition Medicine for 6 years and supported groups in such varied locations as Costa Rica, Lesotho, Vietnam and Nepal as well as to the summit of Kilimanjaro. He is a Fellow of the Wilderness Medical Society’s Academy of Wilderness Medicine (FAWM) and is also an instructor in advanced wilderness life support.
Steve Jones Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Steve is the Field Operations Manager in charge of the international base Patriot Hills in Antarctica operated by Antarctic Logistics and Expeditions. As a polar guide he has led groups to both North and South Geographic Poles and on expeditions to Alaska, Arctic Canada, Greenland and Spitsbergen. He has helped several polar adventurers including Pen Hadow, Hannah McKeand and Rosie Stancer to organise their solo polar expeditions and acts as a consultant to extreme adventures all over the world. He works as a consultant in safety management and crisis management based on his personal experiences of treating casualties, a terrorist bombing in London and coordinating a three day rescue of five stranded climbers on the Vinson Massif in Antarctica in 2006.
He has wide ranging expedition experience and has planned and managed over eighty conservation, community and adventure projects for Raleigh International with project partners ranging from CARE International, Save The Children, to National Park Authorities and the Natural History Museums in London and Santiago. As a climber, he enjoys remote expeditionary mountaineering and has climbed in Antarctica, the Russian Caucasus in winter, reached the summit of Denali three times, made twelve first ascents in Greenland; has climbed on Mount Logan, and on three expeditions to the Karakoram.
Sundeep Dhillon FAWM Expedition Medicine Lecturer
As a young man, Sundeep followed Hannibal's route across the Pyrenees and Alps riding a bicycle. He was selected to read medicine at Oxford, where his interest in exploration grew, and he became Chairman of the Oxford University Exploration Club.
Sundeep holds degrees in Physiology and Medicine from Oxford and is a General Practitioner with an interest in expedition and wilderness medicine. He is currently undertaking 6 months training as an anaesthetist with an aspiration to join the London Helicopter Emergency Medical Service (HEMS).
In 2000 Sundeep was awarded the British Association of Immediate Care Schemes Medal by the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh for Pre-Hospital Care.He is a member of the Royal Geographical Society Medical Cell and has served as the youngest Member of Council of the Society.
Having a passion for climbing, Sundeep summited Everest in 1998, becoming the youngest person in the world to climb the Seven Summits. He has since gone on to climb Cho Oyu (2006) and Everest again (2007) as part of the Caudwell Xtreme Everest Medical Research Expedition where he was the climbing leader. Sundeep has had first-hand experience of extreme environments, from the mountains of Antarctica to the Sahara desert, were he completed the 140-mile Marathon des Sables desert ultra-marathon (2000).
In 2002, Sundeep was the Medical Officer for the scientific diving expedition to Pitcairn Island, in the South Pacific for which he was awarded the British Sub Aqua Club Jubilee Trust award. An accomplished climber, Sundeep has a book dedicated to him, called ‘Cloud Sailors’ written by Dr Hugh Montgomery. Sundeep has been an explorer or medical expert in virtually every wilderness terrain in more than 40 countries, from deserts to mountain tops and from the ocean depths to aerospace. He lives on the edge. However, his enduring strength is not recklessness but educated perseverance.
Theo Weston Expedition Medicine Lecturer
Theo has been a full time GP in a semi-rural 10-partner practice in Penrith, Cumbria, since 1982. He joined the practice after spending several years following GP training going on expeditions to various parts of the world as expedition doctor, including Greenland, the Kashmir, the Yukon, a transatlantic sailing trip on board a square rigger and to the Bahamas. He was drawn to the Lakes, where he grew up, because of the opportunities to walk, climb and sail, and has been a Medical Officer on the Patterdale Mountain Rescue Team since returning to Penrith.
He is also Chairman for the local Pre-hospital Immediate Care Scheme (B.A.S.I.C.S.); is actively involved in attending all road traffic accidents and other emergencies in a radius of 10-15 miles from Penrith; and has set up a charity to fund an immediate response vehicle, which is used by doctors to perform this work. In both these areas, he has also been involved in teaching all aspects of pre-hospital care.