HEFAT (Refresher) 3-Day

International Media Support Group in partnership with First Option as program lead is delighted to announce that we will be delivering Hostile Environment & First Aid Training (HEFAT) courses in the beautiful Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania for US based journalist and key staff members.

The First Option HEFAT portfolio is made up of market/sector leading courses that prepare journalists and other key staff members for working in hostile environments and other high risk situations around the world.  Our HEFAT portfolio has been developed and continuously refined in close collaboration with key clients, which include BBC, ITN, Channel 4, CNN, NBC, Washington Post, Alaraby TV, Global Radio and many other networks and broadcasters.

Our courses are endorsed by INSI, the Rory Peck Trust and the Frontline Club through whom we offer bursaries for freelancers. Our courses exceed the ACOS Industry Standard for Journalist Safety Training.

We are also delighted to partner with the International Media Support Group, headed by Emmy Award winning Photojournalist, Chris Post, to deliver these educational courses. 


LOCATION:  Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania, 2-Hours from New York City.

DATES: 30th August 1st September 2022

COST: $1,650 (inclusive of meals and accommodation)

HEADLINE:  The Refresher HEFAT is an abridged version of our Full HEFAT flagship safety course for journalists and key staff members operating in challenging and hostile environments.  It is a residential, intensive 3-day, all inclusive, residential educational opportunity at a world class facility with ample after-hours recreation and wellness opportunities.

WHO NEEDS THIS TRAINING:  Our certificated Refresher HEFAT is perfect for individuals who have previously completed a full HEFAT course and want to maintain valid currency and competency. 


  • The HEFAT Refresher will update and sharpen individual First Aid and personal security skills, whilst also allowing sufficient time for knowledge consolidation and practice time.  The training is delivered through interactive training, blended presentations, discussions, role-plays, practical scenarios and outdoor exercises. Our course delegates are able to confirm their training and practice knowledge in a variety of role-play scenarios that reflect real-life situations, and which build skills and confidence. 
  • Our medical training equips delegates to deal with a range of traumatic injuries likely in hostile environments and also how to maintain good health and hygiene in remote or austere locations.  A revision and grounding of the theory is followed by hands on practice in a supportive learning environment before moving to lifelike casualty simulation as part of the scenario exercises to hone and refine these life-saving skills under simulated pressured circumstances.  Medical subjects covered include: travel and environmental health, basic life support and AED, unconscious casualty and secondary survey; catastrophic bleeding and ballistic wounds; fractures, splinting casualty handling; triage and casualty simulation exercises.

AGENDA: Our training programme covers the following key knowledge areas:

  • Personal and group deployment planning
  • Threat evaluation and risk assessment
  • Personal security and conflict management
  • Vehicle and travel security
  • Ballistics, mines and IED awareness
  • Dealing with local authorities and factions
  • Avoiding and surviving kidnap or detention
  • Living and working in disaster areas
  • Cyber security
  • Psycho-Social Care, Managing Stress & PTSD
  • Revision on Trauma Medical Training, including DRCAB
  • Staying healthy on assignments: Disease and travel environment illness/injuries prevention

Email highrisk@firstoption.group for further details

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