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Wilderness First Aid, How long is the cert good for?

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For those of you in the D.C. area, wildsafe.org runs a FANTASTIC WFA/WFR program, it's a bit pricey but i've spoken to several who have taken 'cheap' training and the experience is nowhere near as good.  The two guys who run the program are both Eagle Scouts.  I took their course in May of 2015 and am retaking it with my boys in June.  The instructors evenly balance classroom and hands-on to ensure you get to practice what you learn.  Our final 'graduating' scenario in 2015 involved three campers who had been attacked by bears, complete with impalements, compound fractures, burns, and lacerated abdomens.   Lots of fun (and blood!)

 

Curious, but how much is "pricey"?

 

We had a local unit who did a similar program. They charged $80 and it was 16 hours. Day 2 was all hands-on scenarios which were very realistic.

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I was doing a little research, trying to find a CPR recert to fill the prerequisite for the council offered WFA course coming up next month

found an online CPR/AED cert course

    I probably wouldn't ever consider such a thing, if I haven't already sat through more CPR and 1st Aid course than I could ever count

        ...but got me to wondering if an online one would even count.

 

Then, I found this course offered at REI the weekend after the council's course

https://www.nols.edu/en/coursefinder/courses/wilderness-first-aid-WFA/

it's $225  

The BSA council one is $90, and seems to be American Red Cross

      Which would you take (aside from the price)?

 

neither includes the CPR cert (which is beyond me why they wouldn't just include it)

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Pricey is irrelevant as are the number of hours and the type of curriculum.  What one is solely interested in is the piece of paper that says one can take their boys into the woods.

 

If BSA was really serious about this, they could be putting on the training, just like Safe Swim, Climbing, etc. at no cost to the volunteer.

 

If this is going to be a requirement they need to follow through with the policies and processes for all other BSA training.  YPT is required and it is free, The nominal fee for job specific is mostly to cover food, supplies, etc.  But it isn't required either.  WB is a monetary commitment....BUT it is not required!

 

If it is a mandatory requirement for running the program it should be demanding the costs to be born by the volunteers.

 

I have had at 112 classes taken for the American Red Cross, I am certified in 11 different specialties, With an additional hands on training I will be certified in Emergency Response Vehicle and certification in fork lift operations, and after another hands on class I will be moved from the service associate position in the 11 different specialties to supervisory in the area of national disaster response.  Whenever training is "out-of-town" I am encouraged to take a chapter vehicle as transportation.  The week long annual seminar training includes hotel accommodations. 

 

The cost to me?  $0.00

 

Quality of training?  I have as much training in safe food handling than most restaurant personnel.  I have had much training as most logistical warehouse personnel.  I can assist people with disabilities as well as those training at the CNA level.  I have the requisite CPR/AED/First Aid training.  Defensive Driving courses, on the road testing of vehicle operations, etc.

 

So is this a waste of Red Cross dollars?  Or is it just their way of putting highly qualified and trained people in the field in a mass disaster situation?

 

And when was the last time I was with the Scouts?  Last meeting on Sunday.  Red Cross?  Last night and I'm setting up a client case this evening as well.

 

Only in Scouting can the untrained take our children out into the field.  YPT is not enough.  If one wishes to do more, get out your checkbook.  Ever wonder how Red Cross can "afford" all that free training?  It's because most all the instructors are volunteers.  There's very little if any cost to put on the training.  Not only that ARC accepts training credentials from other organizations as well.  FEMA training, American Heart training, professional training, state health certifications.  These are highly qualified professional people volunteering their time to train others to make a difference.  Kinda like "helping other people at all times"  sort of thingy.  Red Cross takes care of it's volunteers as well as it takes care of it's clients.

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I was doing a little research, trying to find a CPR recert to fill the prerequisite for the council offered WFA course coming up next month

found an online CPR/AED cert course

    I probably wouldn't ever consider such a thing, if I haven't already sat through more CPR and 1st Aid course than I could ever count

        ...but got me to wondering if an online one would even count.

 

Then, I found this course offered at REI the weekend after the council's course

https://www.nols.edu/en/coursefinder/courses/wilderness-first-aid-WFA/

it's $225  

The BSA council one is $90, and seems to be American Red Cross

      Which would you take (aside from the price)?

 

neither includes the CPR cert (which is beyond me why they wouldn't just include it)

 

I have taken both my local REI course and the BSA course. I have also taken the ARC course. As you can imagine they vary in quality. REI was good on one occasion and so-so on another. BSA was the same. ARC was very hands-on but no real scenario playing. It really depends on the instructor. BSA courses were more likely to have the fun hands-on scenarios. ARC was more clinical. REI was less clinical, felt more like classroom work.

 

That's how it was/is where I live. Hopefully you have a different experience. I am not sure I would pay $225 unless you are taking it from the national outdoor school or some place fun like that. ;)

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I was doing a little research, trying to find a CPR recert to fill the prerequisite for the council offered WFA course coming up next month

found an online CPR/AED cert course

    I probably wouldn't ever consider such a thing, if I haven't already sat through more CPR and 1st Aid course than I could ever count

        ...but got me to wondering if an online one would even count.

 

Then, I found this course offered at REI the weekend after the council's course

https://www.nols.edu/en/coursefinder/courses/wilderness-first-aid-WFA/

it's $225  

The BSA council one is $90, and seems to be American Red Cross

      Which would you take (aside from the price)?

 

neither includes the CPR cert (which is beyond me why they wouldn't just include it)

 

The Red Cross does not do WFA in our area anymore and is dropping it from their offerings.  BSA and others have been doing it so it's no longer feasible to provide it.  I was hoping to get it for free, being an ARC volunteer.  Nope, nothing in our area is offered.

 

BSA or 3rd party.  The question is why isn't BSA putting it on for free?  It's their program after all.

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The Red Cross does not do WFA in our area anymore and is dropping it from their offerings.  BSA and others have been doing it so it's no longer feasible to provide it.  I was hoping to get it for free, being an ARC volunteer.  Nope, nothing in our area is offered.

 

BSA or 3rd party.  The question is why isn't BSA putting it on for free?  It's their program after all.

 

BSA does not teach WFA, it never has.  The course curriculum has been adopted by both American Red Cross and ECSI.   We have worked with both to build instructor capacity in local councils.  

 

ARC info:   http://www.scouting.org/HealthandSafety/amredcross.aspx

 

ECSI Info:  http://www.scouting.org/scoutsource/HealthandSafety/Training/ECSI.aspx

 

To teach the course, one needs to be either an ARC or ECSI instructor.    So, if you are an ARC instructor, add it on.   

 

And fundimentally, the WFA course helps those running trek and high adventure backcountry camps meet both BSA NCAP and American Camp Association Accreditation standards.    It might be important to the understanding of the concept.   

 

RichardB

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BSA does not teach WFA, it never has.  The course curriculum has been adopted by both American Red Cross and ECSI.   We have worked with both to build instructor capacity in local councils.

By "BSA" I mean local units, districts or councils.

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In New England, just about each year, WFA courses taught by SOLO instructors are hosted by a Council or unit.  $120-150pp. I have not seen any Red Cross offerings here.

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I mentioned earlier than ours is a red cross course....only say that because the info page has the red cross logo

https://www.nfcscouting.org/wilderness-firstaid

I had just assumed that it's a course using a red cross curriculum and red cross certified instructor. (probably a volunteer is my guess, speaking to Stosh's point about cost...)

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The ARC used to teach the course on behalf of the BSA.  Not offered for many years in our state.  BSA either does it themselves or hires a third party to do it.

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The ARC used to teach the course on behalf of the BSA.  Not offered for many years in our state.  BSA either does it themselves or hires a third party to do it.

 

Stosh, respectfully, The ARC has not taught a course on "behalf" of the BSA.   The ARC teaches ARC courses.   The current position of the BSA and its relationship to ARC is listed in the link above, that relationship affords councils, leaders the ability to become ARC instructors and to teach ARC courses at a discount, but following ARC criteria and standards.   The ARC Wilderness and Remote First Aid Course can be offered by an ARC instructor so qualified.    You may wish to contact your council training folks if you want to put together a course in your area, see if there are qualifed instructors available.  

 

RichardB

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The Red Cross does not do WFA in our area anymore and is dropping it from their offerings.  BSA and others have been doing it so it's no longer feasible to provide it.  I was hoping to get it for free, being an ARC volunteer.  Nope, nothing in our area is offered.

 

BSA or 3rd party.  The question is why isn't BSA putting it on for free?  It's their program after all.

 

I went through some of this with regard to CPR.

 

I don't know if it's the only one, but the Red Cross does have a Wilderness and Remote First Aid course, same as they have various First Aid/CPR/AED courses.   You can get certified to be an instructor for the ARC.  The Red Cross will set up a user agreement with your council and the instructor can do the courses for a significant discount.  I can do First Aid/CPR/AED under $10 per card for scouts and scouters.   Anyone can get certified to be an instructor for the Red Cross...not sure why the Red Cross would drop it in a specific area unless they didn't have an instructor on staff in that area anymore.

 

I would presume the BSA uses the Red Cross version and instructor so they have some legal standing of "this was taught by a qualified instructor" before accepting the liability for high adventure outings which require WFA...no different than requiring some form of certified CPR instruction for BSA lifeguard. 

 

But, in any event, someone can go to the Red Cross, get certified to teach it, get an agreement with your Council office knocked out, and teach the course as often as needed.

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I went through some of this with regard to CPR.

 

I don't know if it's the only one, but the Red Cross does have a Wilderness and Remote First Aid course, same as they have various First Aid/CPR/AED courses.   You can get certified to be an instructor for the ARC.  The Red Cross will set up a user agreement with your council and the instructor can do the courses for a significant discount.  I can do First Aid/CPR/AED under $10 per card for scouts and scouters.   Anyone can get certified to be an instructor for the Red Cross...not sure why the Red Cross would drop it in a specific area unless they didn't have an instructor on staff in that area anymore.

 

I would presume the BSA uses the Red Cross version and instructor so they have some legal standing of "this was taught by a qualified instructor" before accepting the liability for high adventure outings which require WFA...no different than requiring some form of certified CPR instruction for BSA lifeguard. 

 

But, in any event, someone can go to the Red Cross, get certified to teach it, get an agreement with your Council office knocked out, and teach the course as often as needed.

 

I'm a certified instructor for the Red Cross, but in a different area (Disaster Mass Care).  Unless the Council approves it, I cannot teach it.  Instructors can generally charge whatever they want over cost of materials.  Our council instructors charge $70 per person for the one year certification.  This is why I don't get involved in the process.  Sounds kinda fishy.  I teach Red Cross volunteers in Disaster Mass Care and charge nothing, the training is free.  I'm a volunteer after all.

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For CPR and basic first aid, I get trained yearly for work for free.  Most companies want so many to be emergency response team members and will get you trained for free.  

 

That doesn't cover the WFA portion, but it is a start.

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