We often receive emails asking about expedition medicine jobs. While these come up often, it can sometimes be a bit of a closed world for those new to the game. So, as well as listing specific jobs as and when we hear about them, we’ve also listed some expedition medicine providers. If you don’t find what you are looking for here, then contacting some of these organisations directly may be a good start and you can also have a look at the Jobs Archive, to see what others have done before. More are also listed in our Resources Section.
Please note: we need to say very clearly that we do not endorse these organisations, or the contents of external websites or offer any adventure medicine work ourselves.
Here are a few thoughts from us to help you on your way:
The right stuff / Make sure you the right person for the job: get a thorough understanding of the nature of the trip and the participants before accepting, and be honest about your own experience. You will be judged against your peers, so if you claim to be a ‘mountain medicine expert’ then you will be expected to perform at that standard. The FPHC Guidelines on Medical Provision in the Wilderness give an idea of what competencies will be expected. Also, you should be at least as good, if not better than the clients at any outdoor activities you will be undertaking. That way you can keep some head-space free for the medical aspects of the trip.
The deal / Make sure you are clear about the deal you are being offered: are flights, kit, indemnity and expenses in country included? Be wary of operators who offer you ’10% off’ off the cost of the trip if you are willing to act as the doctor. Often, the cost of kit, indemnity and preparation time will be considerably more than the 10% and may detract from your enjoyment of the expedition. Our position in Adventure Medic is that being an expedition medic is a job, with professional risks and responsibilities, and as such should include a salary, in addition to kit and indemnity costs. Whatever you choose though, please make sure that you feel protected, and adequately compensated for your work.
The locals / On your trip, you may well be asked to treat locals or porters. Think about how you will deal with this before you go and make sure that the organisation is onside with whatever you decide. At Adventure Medic, we strongly believe that you are responsible for the wellbeing of everyone on your trip, including porters. Have a look at the International Porter Protection Group Guidelines on Ethical Trekking and make sure your trip is compliant before you go.
Indemnity / Get suitable indemnity cover before going – be sure to tell the indemnity company if you are lead medic, sole medic or looking after Americans, Canadians or Australians. You can find more information about this in our guide to the Legal Aspects of Expedition Medicine.
Educate yourself / Think about going on a course to prepare you for the trip. Remember that being an expedition medic is often about logistics – casualty evacuation, communications, supplies – rather than treating injuries. Also, make yourself aware of British Standard BSI 8848:2014 – the national standard for managing risks on expeditions.
Mention us / Please mention us if you find your job through Adventure Medic. It keeps the wheels turning.
Enjoy yourself / After all, isn’t this why we suffered through all those exams?
Jobs with salary and expenses paid
Ongoing – Doctors / Critical Care International
Critical Care International (www.critcareint.com) is a UK-based company delivering remote healthcare to the highest medical and ethical standards for organisations operating in the world’s most challenging environments.
We work closely with clients to deliver ethical, evidence-based and sustainable development projects.
We offer a variety of deployed roles and we are currently recruiting for doctors with at least 3 years post qualification experience, including in resource poor settings. Clinical support and governance is provided by a panel of specialty experts, alongside our operations team.
If this of interest and you would like more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with a full CV.
Ongoing – Doctors / Lamin Health Center / The Gambia.
Are you a doctor with an interest in global health who wants to live close to beautiful beaches in West-Africa? Lamin Health Center seeks medical doctors for short and long term positions. LHC is a non-profit clinic with a capacity of 21 admission beds including a paediatric ward, delivery room, emergency room, laboratory and dressing room. It covers an area of about 35.000 inhabitants with 3 health posts in the surrounding villages. We are looking for doctors with experience in EM/GP, internal medicine, gynaecology and/or paediatrics and who are willing to educate the local staff. You can expect a warm and motivated team, dynamic working days and a highly rewarding job. A local salary is provided; accommodation is possible. For more information please contact Annemieke de Koning on email@example.com.
Ongoing – Royal Flying Doctor Service / Western Australia
Fancy a change to the Outback? We require experienced, energetic doctors with strong critical care skills and at least six months anaesthetics to join our aeromedical retrieval teams at bases across Western Australia. Suitable doctors include General Practitioners with anaesthetic/ICU skills and Critical Care trainees wanting some time out from the training program. Positions are full-time for a minimum of 12 months, with an attractive remuneration package including relocation, house, car and generous leave entitlements. For more information and eligibility criteria, please visit our Careers Page.
Ongoing – Clinical Fellow Emergency Medicine and Pre-hospital care – Bangor, N Wales (Snowdonia)
Recruiting middle grade EM doctors, specifically post-ST3 training, but any can apply. Experience working in a small rural ED, and being an active part of the pre-hospital system for 20% of the job. Work alongside ambulance crews, Helimed, and the local Search And Rescue teams, with lots of teaching opportunities to get involved in. Surprisingly high acuity, decent range of trauma, and good exposure to environmental emergencies rarely seen in most of England & Wales. Applications also accepted from training anaesthetists, as well as opportunities for a range of other levels of seniority. Go to Job opportunities for doctors on mountainmedicine.co.uk and click on the relevant position.
Ongoing – Diving and Hyperbaric Medicine Post, DDRC Healthcare, Plymouth
DDRC Healthcare (formerly the Diving Diseases Research Centre) offers three junior doctor positions, with one post commencing in February and two commencing in August. They are one-year contracts working three days per week at DDRC, including training in diving and hyperbaric medicine. Minimum two years of post-graduate experience. More info at ddrc.org/jobs or contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Ongoing – Doctors / Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors without Borders) / International locations
Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is recruiting doctors to deliver emergency medical care in more than 60 countries. As a doctor with a minimum of 2 years post-qualification and clinical experience, you may be responding to a measles or meningitis outbreak, assessing medical needs after a natural disaster, working as a primary healthcare physician, treating HIV/AIDS or TB patients or treating survivors of armed conflict. Your clinical skills and resourcefulness will be put to the test while you work in locations where the health care infrastructure may have completely fallen apart, or while you work to diagnose and treat unfamiliar medical conditions. But you will not be facing these challenges alone – Médecins Sans Frontières provides expert technical support including extensive guidelines and protocols. Working with Médecins Sans Frontières to deliver medical aid overseas requires passion and a serious commitment for at least 9 months. Recruitment is open year-round. Read about working for Médecins Sans Frontières and check that you meet the specific role requirements. If you are in the UK, access this page. If you are in Australia or New Zealand, access this page.
Jobs with expenses paid
Ongoing – Medical Aid for Palestinians
Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP) is an international, non-political, non-religious, non-governmental organisation working for the health and well-being of Palestinian refugees and those living under occupation. They are looking for final year trainees, consultants or recently retired consultants across a range of specialties to undertake post-traumatic reconstructive surgery (once there is a stable ceasefire) for those affected by war injuries in Gaza. Click here for more information, or send your CV and availability to email@example.com
Ongoing – Volunteer Medics and Elective Students / Vine Trust / Medical ship
Vine Trust is an international development charity which is involved in long-term health partnerships with local organisations to strengthen health systems, increasing access to primary healthcare to remote and vulnerable communities. As part of its activities, Vine Trust offers health professionals the opportunity to participate in short-term volunteering opportunities (2-4 weeks) on-board one of 3 medical ships in the Peruvian Amazon or Tanzanian Lake Victoria. For more details see our website or contact the office (firstname.lastname@example.org). Opportunities open to fully qualified health professional who are registered to practice in their country of residence. Elective options also available for final-year students.
These jobs are no longer available, but looking through them will give you an idea of what work is out there.
|Backpacker Medics is a volunteer, non-profit collective of paramedics and health professionals. Since 2012 we have been working in a small, rural village in eastern Nepal and together with the Moonlight Foundation Nepal and the local community we have funded, constructed and facilitated a free healthcare facility: The Moonlight Community Healthcare Centre (MCHC). We provide regular opportunities for suitable medical volunteers to work in the MCHC in conjunction with our full-time Nepali Medical staff. We have created a 14-day program for volunteers which includes 7 days of exploring the region and assisting the community and 7 days working in the MCHC. There are positions available in this programme on a monthly basis. For more information email Contact: email@example.com|
|Blue Ventures operates marine conservation programmes in Madagascar, Belize and Timor. We welcome medics 2 years post qualification as well as nurses and paramedics with 3 years experience (including emergency medicine if nursing). We also run medical electives. It is a great role that allows good exposure to expedition medicine with expert backup. You also get to be involved in all of the expedition activities on site. We offer an induction and there are multiple projects to get their teeth into on site. No prior dive experience necessary. Medics get a substantial discount on expedition rates and are expected to cover indemnity costs. Contact: Call +44 (0)20 7697 8598|
|The British Exploring Society is a youth development charity that brings diverse people together to work in challenging environments. It creates expeditions that help equip young people with the courage, skills and resilience to make the most of their future. Expeditions are 2-6 weeks long and take typically place in the Spring, Summer and Autumn holiday periods. British Exploring Society recruit passionate, skilled volunteer medical leaders to join their expedition leadership teams. Medical leaders are fully qualified post-Foundation Year 2 doctors, and other medical professionals, such as nurses and paramedics with expedition or extensive personal travel experience. Further information here. Contact: Call +44 (0)20 7591 3141 or firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Charity Challenge organise over 100 expeditions each year and are well known for Kilimanjaro climbs (including the 2009 Celebrity Climb for Comic Relief). They run treks, bike rides, mountain climbs, rafting, dog sledding, skiing and community challenges in over 30 countries worldwide and routinely take doctors on their trips. They are looking for fully registered medics, post FY2, ideally with experience at high altitude and with some training in, or direct experience of, expedition medicine. They will cover all your costs except for visas and your indemnity cover. Contact: email@example.com|
|Coral Cay run marine and terrestrial based volunteer projects in locations such as Cambodia, the Philippines and Montserrat with a goal to provide 'the resources to help protect coral reefs and tropical rainforests throughout the developing world'. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org|
|DocTours arranges volunteer programs for medical professionals and all healthcare students. Destinations include Nepal, Cambodia, Fiji, Sri Lanka, East Timor, Ecuador, Tanzania and Namibia. Non-medical partners are also welcome and the dates are flexible. Contact: email@example.com|
|Dream Challenges offer a range of charity events including treks such as Everest Base Camp and Kilimanjaro and cycle rides everywhere from India to South Africa. They are one of the smaller, newer companies but are offering some new and more unique trips such as a Uganda Trek. They are often looking to recruit medics to work on their trips and will cover your expenses (everything from indemnity cover to a beer on the last night). Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Exile Medics takes enthusiastic medical professionals to the world's most challenging environments to provide medical support for expeditions and extreme events. Doctors of all grades, nurses, paramedics, physiotherapists and medical students work together. Exile Medics also ensures a small number of supervised roles are available for those on their first expedition, making for a great opportunity to develop expedition skills in a structured environment.|
|Part of the Gapforce Brand, Greenforce offer trips, mostly targeted at people on Gap Years to Fiji, Ecuador and Borneo to name a few. For the more remote of these projects they will take a medic. They tend to be around 4 to 10 weeks long and whilst they will cover your in country costs often the cost of the flight is often your own responsibility. Contact: email@example.com|
|Jolt Trust is a small volunteer-run charity that runs trips every 2 years with the aim of making a positive lasting difference to the lives of disabled, ill, neglected and abused young people. They have already recruited medics for their 2014 trip (a journey across Africa from Zambia to Mozambique) but are likely to have more opportunities in 2016. They recruit fully qualified doctors who preferably already have some expedition medicine experience. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Operation Wallacea is an organisation that runs wildlife conservation programmes in a number of remote locations around the world. They run a lot of marine and diving activities, e.g. in Mexico, but also have projects based inland for example in the jungle in Honduras and in the South African bush. All the expeditions run between June and September. It is worth noting that they very often have volunteers from North America on their programmes – this is only an issue as that you would be expected to look after them as the site medic and getting indemnity insurance to cover you for this is either very difficult and expensive or sometimes not possible at all. They will cover your expenses on site and will provide money towards your flight, how much they provide increases with the longer you agree to stay. Op Wall are looking for fully registered nurses, doctors and paramedics with at least two years experience post qualification. Contact: email@example.com|
|Raleigh International run sustainable development programmes in Costa Rica, Nepal and Tanzania focusing on protecting vulnerable environments, improving access to safe water and sanitation and strengthening community resilience in poor rural areas. The role of the medic in the team is to look after the health of the volunteers on the programme and to manage emergencies that may occur. They are looking for doctors, registered general nurses or paramedics with a minimum of two years’ experience post-qualification. They will cover a lot of your costs but still expect you to fundraise in the region of £1,150 for a 13-week Expedition.|
|Skyline Events organise a number of overseas challenges each year ranging from Kilimanjaro climbs to Great Wall of China treks with the majority of their participants taking part to raise funds for charity. They take a doctor on all of their trips and are looking for post-FY2 medics with trekking and cycling experience plus training in expedition medicine. They will cover all expenses except indemnity cover. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org|