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The Scout

The Scout is one of the four foundation paths and is also sometimes called “advance party.” Whether you are taking the scout courses just to gain new knowledge and experience, or cherry picking the pieces you like, or are intending to work on Herbal Medics teams as a scout, these courses offer a diverse and in-depth range of skills.

In the real world, Scouts must be able to plan an Herbal Medics mission from start to finish. This begins most commonly by researching culture, language, location, economy, health care issues, nutrition, clean water and other related problems both through conversations and online. This path also involves visiting the community in order to understand their specific health-care related needs. Scouts must understand security concerns and route-mapping – particularly in the case of post-disaster and foreign countries. Ingress and egress routes, transportation, political and legal stability, map reading and orienteering, reconnaissance, linking up team members, basic survival, escape and evasion and long-distance movement across both urban and wilderness environments are all part of the scout training.

During fall 2018, we will offer all of the scout-specific required courses for students who are interested in getting a foundation path certificate in scout.

The scout must be able to work as “advance party” for a team, whether in the USA or abroad. Understanding the abilities and limitations of the team, and understanding a little bit about every other path of the team is important as well. For instance, in a region that suffers from high intestinal parasite infection rates, what is the condition of the drinking water, and are the materials and resources available for us to create a water filtration system on the ground? What are their most common health issues? How difficult or easy is it to access the area either on foot or other transportation means? What are all of the security risks for the team – from environmental to political – and what is all the information that the scout can gather to give the team the best possible decision making abilities while planning a health-care related trip?

The scout is a path that can be physically demanding. It is recommended that a student interested in the scout program be comfortable walking at least 25 miles over the course of 5 days, with 20-30 lbs. of weight on their back. The student must also be comfortable with running, swimming (or wading in deep water), obstacle course type activities and cold-camping in primitive settings.