November 2, 2010 - Physical strength. Survival skills. The ability to administer medical care in adverse conditions. All of these things will be tested when participants converge for the second annual MedWAR Tennessee race on November 6. The race is hosted by Lincoln Memorial University-DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine (LMU-DCOM) and is organized by the LMU-DCOM Wilderness Medicine Club.

MedWAR is a unique event that combines wilderness medical challenges with the growing sport of adventure racing. The race was also developed as a tool for teaching and testing the knowledge, skills and techniques of wilderness medicine, and for promoting teamwork and collegiality among competitors. MedWAR is sanctioned by North American Educational Adventure Racing.

MedWAR began in 2000 when several emergency department physicians and medical students at the Medical College of Georgia created the first race. The initial race followed a five leg format, where participants checked into a central headquarters after each leg. Since then races have been added across the country. A MedWAR race may include scenarios related to the treatment of sprains and fractures, frostbite, burns, drowning, soft tissue injuries, head injuries and life support measures. The race also includes elements of basic search and rescue techniques as well as ethical issues related to wilderness medicine. Participants must navigate a physically challenging outdoor course and must stop to address various simulated medical rescue scenarios during the race.

In 2009 several LMU-DCOM students successfully petitioned to institute the MedWAR Tennessee race. LMU’s proximity to Cumberland Gap National Historical Park makes the region an ideal setting for an adventure race. Saturday’s race will follow a course through the LMU main campus in Harrogate, Tenn., and into the National Park. This year at least 15 teams from across the country will compete in the event.

The DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine is located on the campus of Lincoln Memorial University in Harrogate, Tennessee. LMU-DCOM is an integral part of LMU’s values-based learning community, and is dedicated to preparing the next generation of osteopathic physicians to provide healthcare in the often underserved region of Appalachia and beyond. For more information about LMU-DCOM, call 1-800-325-0900, ext. 7082, e-mail, or visit us online at

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