Alpine Programs

Clinics and Conferences

Vail Valley Medical Center will again play host to this year's presentation of the USSA Medical Emergencies in Skiing and Snowboarding (MESS) Course. The 2014 MESS Course will present concepts for evaluation of traumatic emergencies in elite level ski and snowboard competitions, event medical support systems for World Cup Events in skiing and snowboarding at international venues, and management of common medical conditions of the elite ski and snowboard athlete. Outdoor practical training scenarios are planned to be taught Saturday at Beaver Creek Ski Resort to review the skills taught in the classroom. Advanced skiing and/or snowboarding skills are required for on hill scenarios.

The MESS Course is presented by USSA Sports Medicine in conjunction with Vail Valley Medical Center, Vail Valley Resorts, and Eagle County Paramedic Services.

Conference Fee: $695 per Physician

The USSA MESS Course 2014 is open. Please contact Gillian Bower ( for more information

Dates, Times and Details

Conference Date: 7am - 5pm  December 12 & 13th 2014 

Opening Reception: 5-7pm Decemeber 11th 2014

Arrival: Thursday, December 11th. Registration 4:00-6:00pm

Location: Park Hyatt Resort, Beaver Creek, CO

Registration Deadline: September 1st  2014 - please contact Gillian Bower at for registration information.

Attendance is limited and is by invite only to the USSA Medical Pool. Registration for PT's and ATC's must be pre-approved by the USSA and will only be assigned if there is room.




Speaker Details

Last Year's Agenda  - For refereance only. 

December 12th 2013

5:00 – 6:00pm                 MESS Course Registration

6:00 – 8:00pm                 Opening Reception – Hosted by Gay & Richard Steadman

December 13th, 2013

6:30-7:30am                    Breakfast

7:30-7:45am                    Course Structure and Objectives (Larry Gaul, MD)

7:45-8:15am                    Introduction to USSA (Kyle Wilkens, PA-C, L-ATC)

8:15-8:45am                    Role of the Team Physician (Gillian Bower PT, SCS)

8:45-9:00am                    Break

9:00-9:30am                    Incident Command (Steve Vardaman & Dwight Henniger)

9:30-10:00am                  On the hill "Racer Down" (Steve Zuckerman, EMT)

10:00-10:30am                Primary and Secondary Survey (Will Dunn EMT-P)

10:30-10:45am                Break

10:45- 11:15am               USSA Return to Snow Criteria and Progressions (Jennifer Kimball DPT, SCS, OCS)

11:15 – 11:45am             Review of Prohibited Substances and Methods (Larry Gaul MD)

11:45 – 12:00pm             Question and Answer Period

12:00 – 12:30pm             Global Rescue- Tiger Shaw

12:30-1:30pm                  Lunch

1:30-5:30pm                    Indoor Practical Stations

                                                      1. Non-surgical Airway Management - Eman Podgorny MD

            2. Surgical Airway – Reg Franciose MD

                                                      3. Spine Injury – Eagle County Paramedic Services

                                                      4. Chest Trauma – Jason Moore PA-C

                                                      5. Chest Pain/Dyspnea/AED – Steve Vardaman

                                                      6. Extremity Evaluation and Splinting – Beaver Creek Ski Patrol

                                                      7. IV/IO Practice - Eagle County Paramedic Services

                                                      8.Trauma Pack Review – Megan Rand – Global Rescue

5:30-6:00pm                    Adjourn – Questions and Informal Discussions with Team Physicians and USSA Medical Director


December 14th, 2013

6:00-7:00am                    Breakfast

7:00-7:30am                    Practical Station Preview (Steve Zuckerman, EMT)

7:30-9:00am                    Management of Concussion (Jeffery Kutcher MD)

                                        USSA Concussion Policy and Return to Snow (Kyle Wilkens, PA-C, L-ATC)

9:00-9:30am                    Shoulder Evaluation - (Thomas Hackett MD)

9:30-9:45am                    Break

9:45-10:15am                  General Medicine  (Jack Eck, MD)

10:15-10:45am                Non Surgical Orthopedic Issues (Craig Young)

10:45-11:15am                Dental Emergencies (James Harding, DDS)

11:15-11:30 pm               Indoor Wrap up and Instructions

11:30 – 12:15 pm            Box Lunch / Free Ski

12:30pm                          Last time to load lift for On-Hill stations

12:45pm                          Meet at top of Chair 8 "cinch express"

1:00-4:00pm                   Six On Hill Practical Stations – Birds of Prey  




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