About the Diploma
Together with our partners, the International Society of Mountain Medicine (ISMM) and the International Commission for Alpine Rescue (ICAR), the UIAA Medical Commission has established and developed a joint Diploma in Mountain Medicine.
The courses complement the regular courses in mountain medicine in many countries. The medical commissions(Medcom)
of UIAA and ICAR, together with the International Society for Mountain Medicine (ISMM) established minimal requirements for these courses in August 1997 (Interlaken,Switzerland).
Many course organizers adopted these standards and the Diploma in MountainMedicine
(DiMM) has become a widely respected qualification.
regulations have been updated to reflect
developments in mountain medicine, internet communications and to ensure that the high standard of the DiMM is
maintained. The member organizations approved the changes in the regulations on
the 8th of August 2010 at a joint meeting
in Arequipa, Peru.
New course organisers are encouraged to discuss with, and/or invite, members of the UIAA Medcom, ICAR Medcom and ISMM to observe their courses. For new courses, approval is for two years. When a course reapplies for approved, the organiser must provide information on the number of successful and unsuccessful candidates during the previous period. Re-approval is for four years. The names of approved courses, their geographic location, main language and contact email address will be posted on the member organisations’ websites.
can be organised for medical doctors (including medical students near
registered nurses or paramedics. Participant s should be interested and/or
and have current (< 5 years) training in basic life support. The course can
into different parts appropriate for the or ganizing country (e.g. summer,
winter; basic, specialty
etc.) but must include the common course syllabus
to award a diploma.
This must have a minimal study time (lectures, workshops and practical work) of 100 hours. Courseorganisers can determine who can attend the course and the speciality offered. In addition, course organisers may seek University status for the course. All courses should have some form of valid theory assessment and demonstration of practical skill with a fail potential.
Candidates should be encouraged to complete and maintain a logbook to demonstrate continuing professional development.
Types of Courses offered
The international syllabus covers altitude physiology and illness, expedition health, remote area trauma care, group psychology, travel medicine and also practical mountain skills. All holders have relevant skills and insight into the practical problems of delivering optimum patient care in the mountains.
- Common Course in Mountain Medicine (100 hours): This course covers the basics from hypothermia and frostbite, navigation and survival techniques as well as basic mountaineering techniques.
- Specialty Course: Expedition and Wilderness Medicine (40 hours):This course is designed for persons going on treks and expeditions with the anticipation that they will be providing medical support.
- Specialty Course: Rescue (50 hours): This course is designed for doctors (and if the course organiser wishes, registered nurses and paramedics) who are (or becoming) members of an organised rescue system. They should have been trained in Advanced Life Support and be experienced in mountaineering to an appropriate standard. Curriculum A focuses on medical aspects of terrestrial mountain rescue and is the prerequisite for the attainment of the Diploma. The Add-on Module ‘Air Rescue’(Curriculum B) is recommended for air rescue operations in mountainous terrain and should at least attain the minimum standards and regulations of the region or nation.
More than 3500 doctors, nurses and paramedics have been trained in
these courses up to now. There are 23 different courses for mountain
medicine throughout the world. Please click on this link for a list of approved institutions and diploma courses.
If you are a doctor, paramedic or nurse who would like to take part in a mountain medicine course approved by the UIAA, please contact one of these institutions for details.
For full details of all of these courses, please click on this link.
A representative with a conflict of interest must inform other members of the team of the conflict. Decisions are made by consensus. The administrative team does not have the authority to alter the regulations. Its role is to approve courses by assessing the curriculum a nd assessment methods, and to keep a record of courses (so that enquiries can be directed to course organisers).
How to ApplyOrganisers
of mountain medicine courses can apply to endorse their courses with the labels
of UIAA Medcom, ICAR Medcom and ISMM by
sending a standard application form and the course programme to Dr David
Hillebrandt or John Ellerton.
Applications are to be English and a separate form is required for specialty
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