The original and best pre-hospital training course for both doctors and paramedics.


Learn together

The PHEMCC is one of the only courses offering side by side training for doctors and paramedics.

Learn with experts

The course is led by a faculty of senior PHEM / HEMS clinicians (consultants + aircrew paramedics).

Recognised qualifications

Modules are EASA compliant with optional university accreditation through Northumbria University.

About the course

The aims of the course are quite clear. Provide accessible and up to date package of training that gives both doctors and paramedics the skills needed to operate safely and with competence in the prehospital environment.

We believe we are the only ‘one stop shop’ for external applicants to come and receive this full package of training (outside of local introductory programs). Training encompasses all components of safe and high quality pre-hospital care including; human factors / non-technical skills, clinical skills, technical (including surgical skills), aviation & retrieval medicine theory, water rescue training, aircrew smoke & fire training, aircrew ground school, flying time & navigation practice, aviation CRM and more… phew!


Although pre-hospital Emergency Medicine is one of the newer medical sub-specialties, (GMC sub-specialty and commencement of a formalised training program began in 2012) doctors and paramedics began working together to deliver enhanced care during the 1990s.

The role of doctors in pre-hospital care was initially unclear and not without controversy, but GNAAS recognised the improvements in care that the doctor paramedic model offered, and became one of the first providers outside of London to formalise this team model. The fact that teams were being transported in a helicopter to critically injured patients (rather than the patient being brought to them) meant there was an ongoing need to upskill new doctors and paramedics so they could deliver interventions and enhanced care effectively in this challenging environment.

GNAAS worked with London’s Air Ambulance to develop a course that provided clinicians with both the clinical and non-clinical skills that were required as HEMS (now called PHEM) clinicians. The course became known as the ‘HEMS Crew Course’ and was delivered annually in one form or other from around 2008.

2014 saw the beginning of a new direction for both the course and GNAAS as a training organisation. New directorship and the formation of partnerships with County Durham Darlington Fire Rescue Service and Northumbria University, brought a series of changes, placing the current course at the forefront of training in pre-hospital care internationally. The course was re-branded as the ‘Pre-hospital Emergency Medicine Crew Course (PHEMCC) in 2015.

“Complex course, run brilliantly. Hard work but massively rewarding, cementing together practitioners from multiple backgrounds into a well-drilled future HEMS team.” 

Course content

The course is split into several distinct components.

  • Course manual as pre-reading
  • Module 1
    • Aviation
    • Rotor theory
    • Navigation
    • Underwater escape training
    • Air crew smoke & fire training
    • Crew resource management
  • Modules 2 & 3
    • Clinical and surgical skills
    • Multi-agency working
    • Extrication
    • Hazardous environment working
    • Major incidents
    • CBRN (chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear)
    • SWIFT Water rescue training
    • HEMS aircrew certification (EASA compliant)Crew resource management (EASA compliant)
  • High-fidelity real-time tactical moulage exercise moderated by external assessors

Is PHEMCC for me?

 The course is aimed at both paramedics looking to expand their current skillset (including the ability to function as HEMS / PHEM crew) and also at doctors who are beginning their careers in pre-hospital care (recommended ST3/4+ in anaesthesia or emergency medicine).

We believe one of our ‘unique selling points’ is that we are one of the only courses offering side by side training for these professions. It is quite clear that both specialties have their own strengths when it comes to managing a critically ill patient at the roadside. We deliberately emphasise this throughout the course and candidates soon find that they are learning as much from each other as they are from the faculty – double win!

Due to the high level of medical care required as part of the course, we recommend candidates have at least some experience of delivering pre-hospital anaesthesia (or to have completed the GNAAS pre-hospital anaesthesia course prior to attending PHEMCC).


Jamie Walsh

HEMS Paramedic + Training Manager
Read more

Jamie Walsh works as our senior aircrew paramedic providing critical care to patients at the roadside. His other role at GNAAS is training manager, which involves the planning, organisation and delivery of our courses such as the Pre-Hospital Emergency Anaesthesia Course and the Pre-Hospital Emergency Medicine Crew Course.

Before being part of the team at GNAAS Jamie worked for the North East Ambulance Service in a number of different roles, including rapid response and the Hazardous Area Response Team (HART). Throughout his career, he has also worked as part of the British Superbike Medical Team, Moto GP Medical Team and also done some remote medicine as part of a motorcycle adventure tour.

Jeff Doran

HEMS Doctor + Faculty Lead
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Jeff Doran has been part of the operational team since 2011, and as well as being a doctor he also has the role of faculty lead, meaning he is responsible for the teaching and training of the courses provided by GNAAS.

In addition to this, he is a consultant anaesthetist at James Cook University Hospital.

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Dates for 2021

April course (places are limited)

Clinical week 1 = Starts Monday 19 April 2021.
Clinical week 2 = Starts Monday 26 April 2021.
Aviation module (optional) = Starts Tuesday 4 May 2021.

September course

Clinical week 1 = Starts Monday 13 September 2021.
Clinical week 2 = Starts Monday 20 September 2021.
Aviation module (optional) = Starts Monday 27 September 2021.
Clinical week 1 takes place at GNAAS HQ Progress House in Eaglescliffe and clinical week 2 takes place at Vital Fire Solutions Training Centre in Bowburn.

*Applications will be open soon.*

How to apply

Applications will soon be open.

Applications for the April course will close on 6 November 2020 and applications for the September course will close on 26 March 2021.

Successful applicants will be notified and invoiced. The cost of the two clinical weeks is £2500 and an additional £2300 for the optional aviation week.

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