Thursday, November 11, 2010

Wilderness First Responder Training

Executive Director Jim Rowe and Instructor Phil Perez Teach CPR

Our Fall 2010 Leadership students have been here on base at Tres Ríos taking their Wilderness First Responder Training. Wilderness First Responders are individuals who are trained to respond to emergency situations in remote wilderness settings. 

Wilderness First Responder training is an 80-hour course covering topics including basic life support, responding to trauma cases, management of bone or joint related injuries (such as sprains, fractures or breaks), treatment of infectious diseases as well as transport and/or evacuation planning in injury situations. 

The first Wilderness First Responder course was taught by Stonehearth Open Learning Opportunities (SOLO) in 1984. SOLO was started in New Hampshire in the 1970's to training skiers, climbers and EMT's in in the White Mountains how to provide emergency care for injured parties in remote locations during what is today referred to as "the Golden Hour". Throughout the next decade SOLO developed and taught Wilderness First Aid courses and Wilderness EMT Programs for organizations such as Outward Bound. In 1984 they collaborated with a new organization called Wilderness Medical Associates to create the Wilderness First Responder program, and offered the first course at an Outward Bound site.

Today, Wilderness First Responder training is offered by many organizations, from the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS), to the American Red Cross, to our very own Costa Rica Outward Bound Leadership Semester course. 

The Leadership Semester course provides training for students to become certified Wilderness First Responders, so that they can work as professionals in the outdoor industry. All Costa Rica Outward Bound Instructors are certified Wilderness First Responders (WFR), or as it is often referred to, Woofers.

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