From paramedics and nurses, to combat medics, becoming an offshore medic is a popular alternative career path for experienced medics. But what is an Offshore Medic? What do they do and what courses do you need to do to become one?
Here, we have created a guide about everything offshore medic.
What is an Offshore Medic?
Life as an offshore medic (OSM) involves working on oil rigs (fixed or mobile) and support vessels. Their main role is to look after the health, safety and welfare of the crew. Other duties include health administration or health and safety at work.
Offshore medics alternately spend two weeks offshore (sometimes 4 weeks), two weeks onshore, travelling to and from the rig by helicopter. Adverse weather conditions, such as fog, can affect travel arrangements.
What are the duties of an Offshore Medic?
Offshore, medics work a 12-hour day shift, but are on call 24/7 in case of emergency. They work alone & mostly work in a clean, comfortable office beside the sick bay within the accommodation module of the oil rig. An onshore doctor is available for consultation and acts as a manager.
When offshore, medics can be called out to attend to an emergency anywhere on the rig. Conditions can be cold, wet, stormy, dirty and noisy. Protective gear is required for this. There can be some heavy lifting. There can also be some trips abroad.
The duties of an offshore medic can vary between different roles, but they may include:
- providing 24-hour cover for first aid & emergencies
- dealing with illness and injury that occur onsite: administering drugs, dressing wounds, checking blood pressure, giving anti-tetanus injections, and so on
- conducting medical examinations and acting as a consultant for recruitment medical examinations.
- maintaining stocks of medical equipment and provisions
- contributing to occupational health and safety services & chairing health and safety meetings.
- setting up medical evacuations where a worker must return onshore for immediate treatment
- communicating regularly with the Onshore Company Doctor and the Offshore Installation Manager (OIM)
- maintaining medical records & keeping a daily medical log.
How much does an Offshore Medic make?
A typical offshore medic salary starts at £25,000 to £35,000 a year, rising to around £60,000 with experience.
What do I need to become an Offshore Medic?
As part of offshore medic training, you must successfully complete an Offshore Medic Certificate course and an Offshore Survival Certificate (BOSIET) course, both approved by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
At MediPro, you must meet certain criteria before being excepted on an Offshore Medic course. You must have at least 2 years experience as:
- Registered nurses who appear on the NMC register
- Army CMT1 or RMA 1*
- Navy Leading Medical Assistants*
- RAF Medical Assistant and Medics*
- HCPC Paramedics
- Doctors on the GMC register
- Or the international equivalent of the above
* Candidates subject to further approval from MediPro. Evidence of CPD logbook is required.
You will also need a valid Oil and Gas UK (OGUK) Offshore Medical Certificate. This involves passing a medical examination which classifies you as medically fit to work in the offshore environment. You must also provide evidence that you do not have, and have been immunised against, Hepatitis B.
The HSE states that if your work offshore is ongoing, you must renew the Offshore Medic Certificate every three years. This can be done by completing an Offshore Medic Refresher course.
What Offshore Medic courses are run at MediPro?
Our `full` Offshore Medic course takes place on Teesside at our centre in Stockton-on-Tees. It involves 2 weeks of classroom learning, plus 60 hours of clinical placement. You have 6 months to complete the 60 hours placement. All our placements are arranged locally and are within busy A&E / NHS departments.
We also offer two types of OSM refresher courses at MediPro:
- An Offshore Medic refresher course.
- A distancing learning refresher option.
Like the full OSM course, the Offshore Medic Refresher course lasts two weeks and takes place at our centre in Stockton-on-Tees. This refresher course meets all the requirements of the HSE guidance for refresher learning outcomes.
For the distance learning refresher, we mail out module books to students, plus supporting learning materials. Learners complete the written exercises in the module books by conducting self-directed study and research, then return them to MediPro for marking and feedback. Learners have up to 6 months to complete these. Our tutors are available for phone and online support throughout the process. Learners will return for a 2-day assessment at our Stockton centre. There are no written examinations for this, only practical assessments.
Learners on both courses must hold a current valid HSE Offshore Medic certificate which is in date. If the certificate has expired, please contact us to discuss your options.
If you would like to book onto one of our Offshore Medic courses, please visit the Offshore Medic section of our website, or call us on 01325 609030.