Public Health & Tropical Medicine

Expedition Medical Officers : Concepts related to Geographical Medicine | Expedition and Wilderness Medicine | Jungle Medicine


Tropical Medicine and International Health is the most relevant discipline which comes closest to teaching this novel and highly challenging work stream

Expedition Medical Officers are expected to be experts in managing health conditions related to adventure or sports travel, and the illnesses encountered by people with chronic diseases in such environments.

They have to be able to foresee and prepare for potentially serious conditions like Road Traffic Accidents, Other Accidents, Injuries, Altitude Sickness, Gastroenteritis and Infections.

The most demanding phase for the medical staff working for expedition management is the pre-expedition planning phase as all the relevant pre-requisites like medicines, tools, logistics and strategies need to be made ready.  This needs a thorough knowledge about the expedition and above all the geographical medicine concepts which may be different for people involved in the expedition and may cause health condition neither familiar to the outside medical staff not the expedition attendees.

During the phase of the conduct of an expedition, medical staff is usually alone working without the high-tech diagnostic tools which a conventional hospital or clinic depends upon. Diagnosis is mainly dependent upon clinical skills. They have a critical responsibility of early identification of those vulnerable to the impact of indigenous environmental conditions and treat or evacuate then to safety. The maintenance of triage is also paramount at times important if the number of attendees is large.

Expedition Medicine Courses:

Title Description
London School of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene A few short courses
Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine A few short courses
James Lind Institute Advanced PG Diploma in Tropical Medicine, Surveillance and Immunization

The Advanced PG Diploma in Tropical Medicine, Surveillance and Immunization takes a deep dive into the holistic concepts of Tropical Medicine and includes the concepts involved with expedition and wilderness medicine. The impact of geographical diversity on healthcare is given a strong impetus in the course and prepares for working in diverse conditions where a person’s genotype meets with unfamiliar environmental conditions producing a myriad of clinical presentations only visible to a specialist with thorough knowledge about tropical medicine.

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