SPI is offering medical training courses to help address the needs of scientific groups affiliated to a Swiss research institution preparing field trips in polar regions. These courses are designed to train scientists in first aid in the field with a focus on the special conditions encountered in cold and remote regions. An overview of existing medical support solutions for people working/operating in polar/remote high-altitude environments is also provided. This overview includes telehealth, customised field pharmacies, etc.

The courses are practice-oriented, generally last two days and take place outdoors – bivouacking included. The teaching will be provided in an Alpine environment in the canton of Valais at different altitudes in order to simulate different polar weather conditions.

SPI will cover the costs of two courses per year with a maximum of 12 persons per course. Places are attributed on a first come first served basis. Participation is free of charge but SPI reserves the right to invoice participants cancelling at the last minute if their place cannot be filled.

This course is offered together with the GRIMM (Groupe d’Intervention Médicale en Montagne). Training courses will be repeated annually from 2019 onwards.

2020 courses

  • 20 and 21 March - Cancelled
  • 11 and 12 December

If you need more information, please contact secretariat.spi@epfl.ch.

Required equipment

Appropriate clothing and equipment are a prerequisite for participating. A list of required equipment will be submitted to participants.

HUET training

Additionally to the training mentioned above, SPI also contributes to the costs of registration for Helicopter Underwater Escape Training (HUET) of scientific personnel affiliated to a Swiss research institution preparing field trips in polar regions. The contribution of SPI is of 500 CHF per person and needs to be duly justified by relevant fieldwork. Training eligible for support is organised by Air-Zermatt. Read more information about the training.

Upcoming course:

  • 11-12 December 2020