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Applications from Training Providers to Teach IMCA Approved Diver Medic Technician (DMT) or IMCA Approved Diver Medic Technician Refresher (DMTR) Courses

1.      Introduction

This information note is maintained by the IMCA Secretariat in accordance with IMCA’s Bye-Laws.

IMCA promotes improvements in health, safety, environmental, quality, technical and contracting standards and IMCA expects its Members to comply with IMCA’s Bye-laws, codes of practice, guidelines, information notes and other materials. An entity’s membership of IMCA, does not constitute a representation, warranty or guarantee by IMCA that the Member will perform their operations consistently in accordance with IMCA’s Bye-laws, codes of practice, guidelines, information notes and other materials. IMCA assumes no responsibility or duty of care to any person in respect of any operations of any Member (or IMCA certified person) and IMCA shall not be liable in tort, contract or otherwise in respect of any such operations.

This document describes:

  1. the membership application process for those training providers seeking admission to the DT2 category of IMCA membership.  DT2 members are training providers offering IMCA Diving Division approved training courses;
  2. the procedures to be followed by DT2 applicants wishing to teach IMCA approved DMT courses.

The document also contains information for existing DT2 members on how to ensure their IMCA approved Diving Division training courses continue to attract IMCA approval going forward.   

IMCA provides approval for the following courses:

  • Diver Medic Technician (DMT);
  • Diver Medic Technician Refresher (DMTR)
  • Trainee Air Diving Supervisor (TADS);
  • Trainee Bell Diving Supervisor (TBDS); and
  • Assistant Life Support Technician (ALST).

2.      DT2 Membership Application

New DT2 membership applicants should note the following points:

  1. IMCA DT2 membership is available to training providers seeking to offer one or more of the above IMCA approved Diving Division courses. IMCA will not give a training provider permission to teach an IMCA approved Diving Division course unless the training provider becomes and remains an IMCA Supplier Member in the DT2 category.
  2. Applicant companies must submit a standard online membership application via the IMCA website and, once invoiced by IMCA, pay the standard application fee.
  3. Once payment has been received IMCA will conduct its standard due diligence checks.
  4. Upon successful completion of the due diligence checks, DT2 applicants wishing to teach IMCA approved DMT courses will then be required to observe the additional requirements set out in this Information Note.  Those wishing to teach IMCA approved Diving Supervisor or ALST training courses will need to observe the additional requirements contained in IMCA Information Note 1584. 

3.      Additional Requirements – DMT Course Approval Application

DT2 applicants seeking to teach IMCA Approved DMT courses are referred to IMCA D 020 – IMCA scheme for recognition of diver medic training – Guidance for training establishments – which contains the application documents and sets out details on syllabus and contact hours for both the diver medic course and the refresher course.

3.1 Documentation to be Provided

Training providers interested in pursuing IMCA recognition for Diver Medic Technician (DMT) courses should send a completed IMCA D 020 Part 2 – Application Form to IMCA at [email protected], together with a document package containing the following:

  • Details of the course administration requirements/arrangements. (Note: On successful completion of the course the following persons may be awarded an IMCA DMT certificate):
    • Holders of a diver or diving supervisor certificate currently recognised by IMCA for offshore diving under the IMCA International Code of Practice for Offshore Diving (IMCA D 014).  Such certificates are listed in the latest version of the IMCA Information Note entitled, “Diver and Diving Supervisor Certification.”
    • Holders of a valid IMCA/AODC Life Support Technician (LST) certificate.
    • Other persons may attend an IMCA approved DMT course (e.g. vessel medics wishing to increase their knowledge of diving medical issues).  However, such persons should only be issued with a successful course completion certificate which does not contain a reference to IMCA. 
    • All persons expected to go under pressure must hold a valid certificate of medical fitness to dive.
  • A detailed programme(s) for the DMT and/or DMTR course.  The course programme should demonstrate that the training provider will fully cover the syllabus as detailed in IMCA D 020 for the relevant course.  It should also show which components are theoretical and which sections are practical.  At least 50% of the course programme should involve practical training.
  • Copies of detailed teaching/lesson plans for each lesson delivered as part of the course, including details of the lesson objectives and supporting training materials. 
  • Copies of all the PowerPoint presentations developed to support each lesson.
  • A list of training videos intended for use during the course(s).
  • Copies of course quizzes and the final course examination(s).
  • Details of any course text books and notes used.
  • Details of the practical assessments and exercises together with the assessment sheets and marking guides.
  • Details of proposed trainers/assessors for the course(s), including their names and particulars of their diving, paramedic, nursing or other medical experience.  Evidence of currency, either through continuing professional development (CPD) or ongoing field experience, should also be provided.
  • CVs of proposed trainers/assessors, including copies of all relevant certificates.  With the exception of medical physicians on the DMT course training team, all training staff must have attended a formal train-the-trainer or teacher training program and hold certification as a trainer/teacher.
  • Risk assessments for all training activities together with details of how the identified risks are managed to a level as low as reasonably practicable (ALARP).
  • A detailed list of the training aids for the course(s) and a list of supporting medical equipment e.g. surgical gloves and other consumables (see Section 3.3 on training aids).
  • A copy of the course completion certificate.  Note: the back of the course completion certificate should list the main course contents.

Included in the IMCA D 020 guidance document is a template for IMCA-recognised diver medic certificates setting out the standard form of certificate that the training provider will be required to adopt, should course approval be granted. The certificate should also include the diver training, supervisor or LST certificate number presented by the candidate to gain access to the DMT training programme.

Consideration should be given to the use of ‘hologram’ type stickers to deter unauthorised duplication of genuine certificates.   For further details see IMCA D 020 (Part 4).

A senior company representative should sign and return the IMCA D 020 Letter of Undertaking with the application – see IMCA D 020 (Part 3).  Please note that signing and returning this undertaking does not mean that recognition will be granted.

3.2 Training Staff

Diving training providers interested in pursuing IMCA recognition for Diver Medic Technician (DMT) courses should ensure their training staff meet the following requirements.

All trainers and examiners must have a sound knowledge of medical techniques employed in the diving environment.  In addition, all training staff must have experience in either paramedic, nursing or other medical fields.  It should also be evident that all training staff have maintained currency, either through continuing professional development (CPD) or ongoing field experience.

All instructors teaching on the IMCA diver medic programme need to be approved by IMCA in advance.  In addition, where a change in a member of training or assessing staff is proposed, the CV of the new applicant should be forwarded to IMCA for review at least two weeks before he/she is used on the programme.

As a minimum, the training delivery team should consist of the following personnel:

  • A Senior DMT Instructor

They should be a qualified paramedic, nurse, or medical physician with a sound knowledge of how to manage medical issues and emergencies that may arise in the offshore diving industry. 

In addition, the Senior DMT Instructor must have attended a formal train-the-trainer or teacher training program and hold certification as a trainer/teacher.  He/she should either be currently active or be able to demonstrate current competence through continuing professional development.

  • A Diving Medical Physician. 

As a minimum, at least one trainer must be a Diving Medical Physician (DMP) having successfully completed a DMAC/EDTCmed approved Level 2D course or equivalent. In determining the equivalence of alternative courses in diving medicine, IMCA will seek the advice of the Diving Medical Advisory Committee (DMAC). 

In addition, the physician must have the knowledge and experience of dealing with offshore diving issues and emergencies together with knowledge of trauma medicine.  The doctor should deal specifically with the intervention skills and pharmacology required of a diver medic.

Note: The medical practitioner is not required to have attended train the trainer certification training but will be required to be confident in delivering training on the subjects required.

  • Others with Specialist Knowledge
    • A saturation diving supervisor, experienced saturation diver, life support technician or someone else who can demonstrate suitable experience to teach the management of medical emergencies within a diving bell/chamber.  They should be able to teach the methods of care for a casualty when moving a patient within a system or hyperbaric rescue unit (HRU).  In addition, at one time they must have held an IMCA diver medic certificate.
    • An independent examiner who has not had any direct interface with the course delivery.  As a minimum the examiner must meet the same level of competence, experience and qualifications as the trainer.
    • Other instructional staff with specialist knowledge may be used to deliver parts of the course.  All such training staff should have maintained currency in their area of expertise, either through continuing professional development (CPD) or ongoing field experience.  In addition, with the exception of medical physicians, they must also have attended a formal train-the-trainer or teacher training program and hold certification as a trainer/teacher.

At least one instructor and examiner on this programme must hold a current in-date qualification recognised as being able to deliver the first aid at work course. This is to ensure the qualification is also recognised to fulfil, where required, the national legislation requirement that divers hold a valid, current, first aid at work certificate to work offshore.

The training establishment will need to ensure that there are sufficient trainers and examiners to carry out the planned programme. 

3.3 Training Aids

Diving training providers interested in pursuing IMCA recognition for Diver Medic Technician (DMT) courses should ensure a sufficient quantity of well-maintained equipment is available to allow students to complete their training and assessment within the appropriate number of contact hours for DMT and/or DMTR.

As a minimum, training providers must have the following training aids available at the training facility: 

  • A suitable decompression chamber.  This may be a non-functioning but otherwise realistic replica.
  • At least one resuscitation training mannequin per two students.
  • At least two training automated external defibrillators (AED) and two AED training mannequin.
  • At least one complete DMAC 15 medical kit to support the training course.  Drugs may be removed and replaced by replica/dummy vials.
  • At least three venous training arms (one arm per four students).
  • Urinary catheterisation training kits (minimum two plus one female model).
  • Suturing training equipment, one per two students.
  • Blood pressure cuffs, one per two students.
  • Stethoscopes, one per two students.
  • At least three types of stretcher / back board e.g. spinal boards, scoops, Kendrick Extrication Devices etc.
  • A range of adult adjustable cervical spine collars.
  • Intraosseous infusion training device and suitable anatomical training leg, arm or chest (spring loaded or manual placement system).
  • At least one medical examination table that can be raised at each end.
  • Sufficient consumables typical of those found in the DMAC 15 kit to support the range of practical exercises and assessments to be undertaken during the course.
  • At least one airway management training mannequin.
  • Diagnostic equipment listed in DMAC 015 including pulse oximeters.
  • PPE.

3.4 On-Site Audit

Providing the DMT course approval application documents submitted to IMCA fulfil the necessary requirements, it will then be necessary for representatives of IMCA to carry out an on-site audit.  Prior to the audit IMCA will give approval for the training establishment to run a pilot course and the on-site audit will be undertaken while the pilot course is running.  The training establishment will be contacted about the necessary arrangements in advance of the on-site audit.

Details of IMCA DMT course auditing arrangements are set out in Part 7 of IMCA D 020.  Please note that a fee will be charged for this audit (see Appendix 1 IMCA Approved DMT Courses – Audit Fees attached to this Information Note).

During the site audit, representatives of IMCA will assess the training establishment’s premises, administration process, learning management system, safety management system, training facilities and other relevant aspects. 

The training establishment will be advised if the audit findings are unsatisfactory and appropriate feedback will be provided.

Provided IMCA is satisfied with the audit findings, and provided IMCA DT2 membership is approved (see Section 3.5 below), the course(s) will be approved initially for a period of three years and a course approval certificate issued.  The training provider will also be listed on the IMCA website as a provider of IMCA approved DMT and/or DMTR course(s).

Training providers should be aware that a change of company ownership or relocation of premises will require a re-audit which will incur a fee. Course recognition is not transferable (see Appendix 1 IMCA Approved DMT Courses – Audit Fees attached to this Information Note for further information see IMCA Bye-Laws).

3.5 DT2 Membership Approval

Upon successful completion of the on-site audit the standard online membership application form originally submitted (see Section 2) will be subject to a final review, before being sent to the IMCA Operations Committee for approval.  This is a standard 2-week process.

Should the application be approved by the Operations Committee, an invoice for IMCA DT2 membership will be issued.  Membership runs from January to December and invoices are calculated on a pro-rated basis.

Upon receipt of payment for the membership fee invoice, a certificate of membership will be issued, alongside a course approval certificate.  Note: the membership certificate will be renewed annually, but the course approval certificate will be valid for a period of 3-years.  All audit related invoices will need to have been paid before any certificates will be awarded.

4. Continuation of Approval to Deliver IMCA Diver Medic Technician Course(s)

In order to maintain IMCA DMT(R) training course approval, training providers must:

  • submit a list of all students attending each IMCA DMT(R) course;
  • ensure that all students who complete the course(s) fill in the IMCA Diver Medic Training Course Evaluation forms;
  • return 100% of the completed Diver Medic Training Course Evaluation forms to the IMCA Secretariat within 14 days of course completion.
  • days of course completion.

The consistent return of Diver Medic Course evaluation forms to the IMCA Secretariat is central to the maintenance of IMCA DMT(R) training course approval for the full 3-year period.

IMCA also reserves the right to undertake audits of DT2 members teaching IMCA Approved Diver Medic Technician courses at any time. These may be desktop only audits, or a combination of desktop and onsite audits.  Failure to maintain an appropriate level of quality in the delivery of IMCA courses may result in suspension or withdrawal of IMCA course approvals at any time.

DT2 members seeking new 3-year course approval certificates will be audited by IMCA prior to the expiry dates recorded on their existing course approval certificates and, where appropriate, new course approval certificates valid for a further 3-year period will be issued.  Such “re-certification audits” may be desktop only audits, or a combination of desktop and onsite audits. 

5. Online Distance Learning

A portion of the DMT and DMTR courses can be delivered via online distance learning (ODL). ODL can be delivered in one of two ways:

  1. Through an online virtual classroom with the instructor delivering the lessons in a lecture type format via a suitable videoconferencing platform.
  2. Through an online distance learning programme using platforms such as Moodle etc.

More details on online distance learning can be found in IMCA Information Note 1514 (IMCA D 21/20).

6. Away from Home Training Courses

Training providers may on occasions deliver their courses at a venue different from that which has been previously audited by IMCA. All away from home courses require prior approval from IMCA. Approval should be sought no less than two months from the proposed start date of the away from home course. Training providers are required to ensure that an away from home venue is adequate for the training to be provided and that the quality of delivery and training aids and materials is to the same standard as the training delivered at their home base.

IMCA Contact

Ali Macleod
Technical Adviser - Diving

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