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Wilderness Environ Med. 2019 Sep;30(3):281-286. doi: 10.1016/j.wem.2019.05.008. Epub 2019 Jul 11.

Emergency Medical Training for the Commercial Fishing Industry: An Expanded Role for Wilderness Medicine.

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Department of Emergency Medicine, University of Colorado, Denver, CO.
College of Public Health and Human Sciences, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR. Electronic address:
College of Public Health and Human Sciences, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR.
Oregon Sea Grant, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR.


This article describes the conception, implementation, and evaluation of a wilderness medicine-based first aid class for the commercial fishing industry. Commercial fishing is a dangerous occupation in the United States. Currently, commercial fishermen often only have access to basic first aid classes. Because of its focus on austere environments, hazardous conditions, and distance from definitive medical care-hallmarks of commercial fisheries-wilderness medicine offers a more appropriate approach to decreasing morbidity and mortality in the industry. A 2-d, 16-h pilot wilderness medicine course for commercial fishermen, Fishermen First Aid and Safety Training (FFAST), conducted for Dungeness crab fishermen, was effective and well received, based on pre- and postcourse knowledge, skill, and attitude surveys. FFAST has been approved by the Coast Guard and is being made more widely available to commercial fishermen in the Pacific Northwest. The FFAST program offers an example of how wilderness medicine can improve safety and emergency medical response for a wide variety of austere environments not traditionally linked to the backcountry.


injury prevention; marine medicine; occupational health

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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