Tuesday, February 7, 2012

How to become a Remote Medic

   Many students who come through RMI courses ask this question. There are many pathways to the practice of medicine in remote and austere conditions. Let's discuss a few of the most common options.

   Most of the offshore medical companies require a paramedic license. They sometimes require a US based paramedic license but look through the postings and you will find options for non-American medics. There are more options out there for offshore medics if you happen to be an American citizen. These jobs often are connected to the governmental jobs that require a security clearance to work.

Job posting websites:

   There are companies that hire non paramedics. There are two levels of medical personnel: Tier 1 medics and Tier 2 medics. Tier 1 medics *must* be at least a paramedic level of qualification. Tier 2 medics can be FPOS, MIRA, VIPER or any training from Saint Johns Ambulance or the Red Cross/Crescent. 
   The Tier 2 medics are shooters first and medics second. These jobs are not hiring for medical specialties only but as a second line medic. These courses generally run for less than a week. Some of them are approved by the Royal College of Surgeons in Edinburg. The good one are anyway. 

   If you are reading this blog you are intensely interesting in Remote & Austere Medicine. This means that your ultimate goal will be to become a Tier 1 Medic. RMI can help you with that. You will need to be at least an EMT-Intermediate. You will need to have an Advanced Airway cert, Advanced Trauma cert (either ITLS, ATT, PHTLS etc), and you will need an ACLS certificate. 
   RMI offers the Advanced Airway Management cert, the Assessment and Treatment of Trauma - Advanced cert, and the Advanced Cardiac Life Support cert. These certs will be given during the EMT - Intermediate course and sometimes during the Remote EMT course.

In order to get an offshore medical job you need to have some boxes checked first.

   Firstly, you will need to have a medical certification from an organisation that is internationally recognised. Contact some of the companies who are hiring to make sure that your certification is accepted. Most of the certification organisations who are recognised by their respective governments are a safe bet, but make sure that you check before paying for an expensive course. 
   Second, there are other non-medical courses that you will need to have before you can be hired. To be certain contact some of the hiring companies to find out what additional certificates they will need from you prior to enrolment. Some of these courses will be BIOSET, HUET, MIST, STW95, and the SOLAS.

Course Descriptions
OPITO-governs the standards to which the offshore training providers deliver courses to, an example of this is the 3 day Basic Offshore Safety Induction and Emergency Training (more commonly known as the BOSIET).

BIOSET - Basic Offshore Safety Induction & Emergency Training
This 3 Day offshore course is designed to assist in meeting the initial onshore safety training, emergency response training and assessment requirements for personnel new to the offshore oil and gas industry.
COST: €850

HUET - Helicopter Underwater Egress Safety Training with Emergency Breathing Systems (HUET & EBS) 
This offshore safety training course is aimed at all personnel who come in contact with helicopters. This one day offshore safety course is aimed at personnel who come in contact with helicopters and for personnel who require safety training. 

MIST - Minimum Industry Safety Training
Learners acquire the standardised level of safety awareness and training to enter the offshore oil and gas industries.
COST: €450

STW95 -  Standards of Training, Certification and Watch-keeping
This 5 day course and is required by mariners and seafarers who wish to take up a merchant 
marine career internationally. With the help of the STCW training as a comm
COST: £925

SOLASInternational Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea 
Not a lot of info out there on this course.

   If you want to gain work in the offshore community as a medic then you will need to start with your medical certification. That is what Remote Medicine Ireland specialises in. Once you have your medical training then you can start looking into some of the above specialised courses. Some employers require all of the above courses and some only require a few.
   That is why you start with your medical training first and then find a job that you want. You can then find out what additional courses they require and only attend the ones that you need. This will save you money in the long run.

   As far as medical training is concerned, here is a diagram to help you through the medical training found here at RMI.

Offshore Medical Training Pathway from Remote Medicine Ireland

   The basic qualification is the Remote EMT. Remember, if you want to be a Tier 1 medic you need to continue on to at least the EMT-Intermediate. 

   The last two, Remote Medical Practitioner, and the Offshore Paramedic, are available through the Australasia Registry of EMTs (AREMT). There are courses available here in the EU as well as Asia. RMI are not able to offer these courses at the moment. 

   If you want to work in the offshore industry focus on the last qualification. Most companies will want a paramedic as their Tier 1 medic. The RMP (Remote Medic Practitioner) is still quite new and not internationally recognised yet. 

   The RMP programme has a lot of potential. It was designed using the US Special Forces Medic (18D) curriculum. Basically it is the same course as the SF Medic but without all of the military medicine. This year long programme will fill in gaps in your medical training that you will not find in other courses. It is an online course that walks you through all of the subjects needed for a special ops medic. 

   If you are just starting out in the world of Remote Medicine then come take the Wilderness First Responder course. It is an nine day course that will teach you all of the basics of Remote, Austere and Wilderness Medicine. You will get a taste of what RMI has to offer and the course will give you a profound understanding of how to treat casualties in difficult environments.

More information can be found at www.RemoteMedicine.ie



  2. As a CMT1 you are well on your way to becoming a Remote Medic. All you are missing is the HSE Offshore Medics Course. If you contact Exmed.co.uk they can sort you out. Once you have that course you can work in some of the offshore medical positions. They are ELCAS registered.

    There are some companies who ask for paramedics. You can earn your paramedic with us without having to go through 3 years of uni. We offer an 8 month paramedic programme for €5000 that will give you a certificate that will get you offshore and CP jobs.

    There is more information found on our website. www.RemoteMedicine.ie

  3. As far as I'm aware in order to become a "Paramedic" (protected title) no course other than that of an NHS Ambulance trust will give you that qualification. Thats if you ever want to work in the UK and be registered on the HCPC register. The AREMT are an un-regulated training organisation and have no credibility to call anyone they train a "paramedic".

  4. The AREMT is not backed by a governing body. Having said that, many industry medics are working in the offshore/defence/anti-piracy jobs. These large corporations are happy to hire AREMT Paramedics.

    The AREMT was designed for experienced military medics who get out of the service and find out that they have no civilian certification for their training. AREMT can give them a paramedic cert for their military training.

    Most AREMT Paramedics are highly qualified military medics.


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