Everybody Loves a Medic

The 10-day WFR course was a lot more intense than I expected. The course schedule is available online, for the curious. As you can see, there’s a multitude of different topics covered every day, plus a fair amount of nightly reading. Short (30-60 min) scenarios are interspersed between lectures. There were a little under 30 students and two different teachers, both W-EMT, who would alternate between lecture topics. The lectures themselves are in a relaxed format. In addition to the textbook, students are provided with a workbook, referred to as the hymnal. The hymnal summarizes all the topics and provides the notes you’d normally be jotting down during lecture. There are two big scenarios throughout the course, the MCI and Night Rescue.

The Mass Casualty Incident, or MCI, is a 2 hours (or so) scenario designed to give students the experience of managing multiple patients with limited resources. I was a patient for this one, and unconscious for about half of it, but the main emphasis seemed to be on managing rescuer stress and deciding evac orders. (There was only one helicopter, so only one pt could be evaced at a time.)

The Night Rescue mission is definitely the high-light of the course. Sadly, we all took an oath of secrecy, so as not to rob future WFR-ers of the experience. I can relate to you the weather, though: temperatures hovered above freezing, with snow forecast, but instead a downpour of rain and wind gusts of 30-40mph. I’ll also say that I’m now completely justified in packing my silponcho and wearing paracord bracelets.

Overall impression of the course is two thumbs up. I’d do it all over again. In fact, I’m disappointed that the re-cert class I’ll be taking in two years is only 3 days, not 10.