Frequently Asked Questions

Is this required for my position in Scouting?
The BSA requires at least one person (two preferred) per unit to be WFA-certified for certain high-adventure camp and backcounty experiences. You may want to discuss the prescriptive requirements with the specific council, camp, or program you plan to visit. This requirement drove the creation of the task force that wrote the Wilderness First Aid curriculum and its doctrine guidelines.

Where can I take this course?
The American Red Cross and the Emergency Care and Safety Institute have been approved to use the BSA curriculum. They offer courses in major cities around the country. You must apply to these through the organizations directly to take the course and be accredited. Other courses accepted by the BSA are listed on the ACA accreditation site.

Who is eligible?
Anyone over the age of 14.

How was this curriculum developed?
Epidemiological data was analyzed to determine the frequency of events from published literature, and internal BSA morbidity and mortality data was accessed to analyze catastrophic event impact on outdoor programs similar to BSA high-adventure experiences. Education experts determined the appropriate training for a WFA-level course. Legal expert opinion analyzed implications of state licensure restrictions on wilderness first-aid suggestions. Outcomes-based and peer-reviewed literature was utilized to develop the curriculum.

I want to take this course. Will I get a post-course certificate?
Yes. The certificate will state: “This certifies that _______ has successfully completed a class that meets the criteria of the Boy Scouts of America for Wilderness First Aid (WFA).” If the BSA National Supply Group develops a certificate for resale to registered instructors/organizations, that information and how to obtain the certificate will be posted here.

Will using the WFA curriculum and doctrine cost my council when teaching this course?
No. It is provided as a free service by the wilderness medicine community.

Are there specialized BSA instruction materials available for the course?
The American Red Cross, ECSI, and other publishers are preparing specialized textbooks and course material that will aid students and teachers with this course.

I do not wish to take this course, but may I download a copy of the curriculum and doctrine?
Yes, you may download the material here.