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Wilderness Medicine
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Wilderness Advanced First Aid — WAFA


Wilderness medicine training designed for professionals working in significantly remote settings for days or weeks.  

Wilderness Advanced First Aid is comprehensive medical training designed for remote professionals or wilderness leaders who venture into remote and challenging environments.  The course is an abridged, entry-level version of Viristar's Wilderness First Responder training.  


Wilderness medicine differs significantly from standard first aid courses and other training that are oriented toward urban environments. This course teaches how to manage medical emergencies when hospitals and rescue services may not be available for an extensive time period. We prepare students for emergency situations that involve prolonged patient care, severe environments, and improvised equipment.

Prior to enrolling in a course, please review our Functional Position Description. The criteria set forth in this document allows students to self-assess their ability to meet the demands of both a Viristar course as well as the demands of a certified wilderness medical provider in the field.


Curriculum and certification for Viristar's Wilderness First Responder course is provided by Wilderness Medical Associates International. Viristar is proud to be a Licensed Training Company of WMAI.


Sample Syllabus

Day 1


Systems Based Critical Thinking

Infection Control

Patient Assessment System

Circulatory & Respiratory Systems

Adult CPR

Basic Life Support


Day 2

Quiz/Case Studies

Nervous System

Spine Management

Musculoskeletal Injuries

Lifts, Moves, and Extrications

Splints – Extremities

Patient Assessment Drills

Day 3

Quiz/Case Studies


Bites and Stings


Elective Topics

Wounds and Burns

Allergies and Anaphylaxis

Improvised Patient Carries

Patient Assessment Drills

Day 4

Case Study Review

Elective Topic

Backcountry Medicine

Medical and Legal Issues

Patient Assessment Drills


Final Exam



Get a Wilderness Advanced First Aid course schedule here.



As part of Viristar's commitment to your medical rescue training, our instructors and management will consult your group’s needs and teach according to your group’s backgrounds, environments, and experience. Simulations and hands-on activities will be realistic and relevant. Relevant adult education is incorporated directly into our curriculum to maximize learning of medical theory into practical skills.



This course is scheduled for four days, or 36 to 40 hours of instructional and practice time. Upon successful completion students will receive certification in Wilderness Advanced First Aid and Adult CPR. Certification is valid for three years. The course is registered for 36 hours of continuing education credit at the First Responder level through the Commission on Accreditation for Prehospital Continuing Education (CAPCE).

Included Materials

All teaching materials will be at no additional cost. Students will receive the following books on this course:

  • The Field Guide of Wilderness Medicine & Rescue

  • SOAP Notebook

  • Wilderness and Rescue First Aid textbook

  • Wilderness Advanced First Aid Class Notes




We ask our course hosts to provide low level outdoor equipment and any specific gear relevant to their employees when in remote and austere environments. Viristar will supply a specific equipment list to cover simulation and classroom needs.




To recertify a current WAFA certification, retake the WAFA course or upgrade to a Wilderness First Responder (WFR) by taking a Bridge (WAFA to WFR) course.

Contact us more information about recertification options.



Successful completion with certification is based on 100 percent attendance, satisfactory performance on homework assignments and written quizzes, demonstrated proficiency with practical skills, and a successful grade on a final written exam. Viristar  is committed to making reasonable accommodation to any student with special needs.




Students must be at least 16 years old to participate in this course. Those under 18 years of age will require the written consent of a parent or guardian.

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