Expedition & Global Medicine, Kenya

Why come on this course?

Through years of combined experience, we believe that clinicians should not only have good clinical and expedition skills, but also an understanding of the cultures they work amongst. By coming on this course you will develop the skills and attributes required to work in remote environments whilst at the same time contributing to the local community. The teaching faculty are not only knowledgeable and inspiring but are very experienced at running courses in Kenya.

Patrick Avery, one of our senior instructors, returned from a trip home to Kenya in July. He assessed the situation on the ground and given the ongoing uncertainty from recent security incidents in Kenya, and the potential risk highlighted by the British FCO travel advice warning, we have regretfully decided to postpone the running of the course this year. We intend to run the course next year and we would be delighted if you could join us in September 2015 .

Join us in September 2015

Course cost: £1,100. 

This course will provide established and aspiring expedition health care professionals (doctors, nurses, paramedics, and student doctors) with the skills they need to become confident and valuable members of an expedition medical team. It will equip you not only with practical and clinical expedition skills, but will also provide you with a knowledge and understanding of global health issues for health care professionals who are looking at working in such environments. On each course we invite a number of local health care professionals to join us. Alongside instruction from our experienced team, you will benefit from the presence of these Kenyan healthcare professionals who as well as learning with you, will share their experiences, and give their own valuable insight into remote medical care, and the health care challenges in Kenya. Importantly too, part of the profits from every course will be channelled back into sustainable community health projects.

Lale'enok lecture theatre

Lale’enok lecture theatre © James Moore


Course overview and costs

The courses are run over a 6 day period. Fees for the course include all teaching costs, food, transport and accommodation from Sunday evening to the following Saturday morning. Alcohol in moderation and soft drinks can be purchased on request. Note that international flights are not included in the course fee. Delegates are expected to make their own travel arrangements to and from Nairobi.

We are offering places to a maxium of 24 delegates. James, Lucy, Jon and Patrick will all be present to teach and run this course. There will be a maximum of one member of teaching faculty to six delegates.

Our courses are unique in being held in a remote location on community land owned by the Maasai people in Kenya’s Great Rift Valley. This means we have privileged access to the Maasai community’s culture, and use of their land which is rich in both wildlife and heritage and offers us a chance to visit a stunning and geographically fascinating area of Kenya that is off the beaten path and still authentically wild.  As well as the benefits that the community derive from our contributions for allowing us to use their land, everyone’s experience is enriched through personal interactions with the local people.

Camping under the stars, Olkiramatian

Camping under the stars, Olkiramatian © James Moore

The course will be based in a comfortable but basic tented camp erected specifically for the purpose at the Lale’enok Resource Centre on Olkiramatian Conservancy (read more about the course location and accommodation here). In addition to a thorough lecture and practical skills based teaching programme, the course will give a fantastic opportunity to have a true African safari experience with evening gatherings around the campfire. You will get the chance to go on game walks, and both day and night drives to see wildlife that includes elephant, lion, leopard, cheetah, and a vast array of different plains game, of which there are healthy populations there. Local experts and community members will enlighten us about the environment, culture, and health challenges surrounding the local Maasai tribes people who live there.

Delegates need to be relatively fit and prepared for day time temperatures in excess of 30 degrees Centigrade. The Rift is a very unforgiving, hot, and dusty place at this time of year, and it is home to large numbers of poisonous snakes and scorpions. The outdoor activities will include moderately vigorous physical and navigational activities, and although we will try to tailor the schedule to avoid the hottest times of the day, candidates must be prepared for being out in the sun. A full list of health and travel considerations, and instructions on what to bring, will be supplied before booking.

A highly venomous Kenyan specimen of Parabuthus Leiosoma or African Black Tailed Scorpion. Present at Olkiramatian.

A highly venomous Kenyan specimen of Parabuthus Leiosoma or African Black Tailed Scorpion. Present at Olkiramatian © Sean Dundas

Itinerary and course content


  • Delegates to make their own arrangements to arrive at the Karen Country House Inn in Nairobi (information here) for the sunday afternoon.
  • Welcome, introductions, course outline
  • Evening lecture – Expedition and global health; peas in a pod


  • Transfer to Lale’enok via minibus (4 hours)
  • Camp safety briefing including large animals and venomous creatures
  • Expedition medical planning & legal issues
  • Breaking Boundaries – Your global health responsibilities on expedition
  • Outdoor session – scenario
  • Resources – journals, text-books and internet
  • Lecture –  Co-Development; why we need global partners to achieve the sustainable development goals (SDGs).


  • Pre-trip screening (case studies)
  • Expedition medical problems
  • Hypothermia, exercise associated hyponatraemia
  • Jungle problems – bites and stings, including malaria
  • Gastrointestinal illness
  • Workshop – Creating equitable health partnerships. Why knowledge and skills transfer is essential to your career and professional development.
  • Neglected tropical disease
  • Visit to manyatta (Maasai village)
  • Lecture – Wildlife, conservation and health; where we overlap


  • Dawn wildlife drive and walk
  • Expedition injuries
  • ABC teaching and assessment
  • Workshops: splinting/analgesia including nerve blocks/ strapping & wound care/ spinal immobilisation and clearance
  • Expedition skills
  • Medical kits – show and tell.
  • Maps and compasses
  • Water purification
  • Rope skills – belays and improvised rescue
  • Casualty packaging, lifting and carrying
  • Lecture - How many cows for your daughter? Why we have to educate our girls.


  • Practical use of GPS
  • Radios
  • Preparing for trek. Equipment choice and packing
  • Bundu trek – practical navigation – pacing, bearings
  • Camp site selection and lay out – pointers and pitfalls
  • Evening/night game drive back to Lale’enok


  • Road traffic collisions – incident management
  • Safe river crossing
  • Scenario – heat illness and trauma.
  • Workshop – Achieving the post 2015 agenda: how to set up successful healthcare partnerships in remote healthcare environments.
  • Further education
  • Expedition opportunities
  • Evening – maasai dancing and closing nyama choma (meat BBQ) around the campfire


  • Morning return to Nairobi (Karen/Langata) via minibus
  • Onward journeys at your own convenience, coast, safari, Mt Kenya or return to UK