Training & Support
The Institute of Cruise Ship Medicine (ICSM) is a non-profit organisation that provides practical training for medical personnel working on cruise ships. From our first annual conference in 2001 to our next conference in 2017, we have shared best practice and provided training and support for thousands of cruise ship doctors and nurses.
Join the cruise ship medical community
Now we are offering you the opportunity to join our growing cruise ship medical community by creating your own ICSM account. For medical professionals, an ICSM account offers access to training and an opportunity to apply for an available position on any cruise liner at the click of a button. For cruise lines, an ICSM account provides access to a host of credentialed doctors and nurses who are ready to embark on the journey of a lifetime.
Dr Bruno Veneto
Dr Bruno Veneto
Bruno graduated at Padua University Medical School (the oldest in Italy) in 1981.
Soon after Graduation he worked in various London Hospitals. He has been an Anatomy demonstrator at St Georges Medical School in Tooting London SW for two academic years and gained a fellowship from the Royal College of Emergency Medicine (RCEM) in 1988.
After moving to East Anglia Bruno has been working in Norwich, Cambridge and Great Yarmouth in the UK.
In 2003, he took his first assignment with Carnival Cruise Line as ship’s physician, quickly being promoted to senior physician. Dr Veneto has worked in almost all areas of the world as a ship board senior physician working with Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruise Lines.
Dr Chris Taylor
- BMedSci, MBChB, DIMC
Dr Chris Taylor
Chris has been a cruise ship physician for 14 years, working with six cruise lines in that time.
Graduating from Sheffield University in the UK in 1989, Chris rotated through a range of hospital and community posts resulting in his full accreditation as a general practitioner. Chris then turned his focus back to hospital work, taking up a permanent position in Mansfield, England, where he worked for 6 years in the emergency department.
An encounter with a former ship’s physician at a trauma instructors course induced a change of career path and three months later Chris had resigned from the hospital and was stepping onto his first cruise ship and into a new career of medicine at sea.
This career has seen Chris as senior physician on ships of all sizes, from the largest new mega-liners cruising the Caribbean all the way down to single-physician vessels undertaking exotic itineraries worldwide.
Education and training has been a focus of Chris’s work. He has been both an ATLS instructor and an ACLS instructor, and produced a trio of training videos for use in the cruise industry, one of which is currently the principal element of STCW first aid training for seafarers across the fleets of three cruise lines.
In addition, Chris has contributed lectures, case presentations and small-group tutorials at many cruise ship medical conferences over the years and has authored several articles relating to cruise ship medicine in the medical literature.
Dr Eilif Dahl
- MD, MHA, PhD
Dr Eilif Dahl
Dr Eilif Dahl is a board-certified general surgeon (Norway) and paediatric surgeon (Norway, EU)
Since 1971 part-time work every year until present as a ship’s doctor and medical lecturer for a total of more than 10 years for 12 different cruise companies on more than 30 different ships, including chief medical physician on MS Oasis of the Seas during her inaugural season in 2009. First cruise contract: MS Song of Norway in 1971; last one (so far): MS Azamara Journey 2017.
Consultant, Norwegian Centre for Maritime Medicine, Haukeland University Hospital, Bergen, Norway (part-time)
Senior Ship’s Physician, various cruise lines (part-time)
Deputy Editor-in-Chief, International Maritime Health, Gdynia, Poland
Honorary President, Institute of Cruise Medicine, Miami, USA
Board Member of The Norwegian Association of Maritime Medicine (NAMM) since 2008 and Honorary Member (#6) of NAMM since 2016.
Senior consultant, paediatric surgery, Oslo University Hospital
Professor of maritime medicine, University of Bergen, Norwegian Centre for Maritime Medicine, Haukeland University Hospital, Bergen, Norway
Professor of general surgery, University of Oslo
Professor of trauma surgery, University of Oslo
Head, Department for wound and fracture care, Municipality Emergency Department (‘Legevakten’), Oslo, Norway
Medical consultant for new-buildings: Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, Ivaran Shipping Company, Celebrity Cruises, & Crystal Cruises
Medical consultant for Crystal Cruises 14 years (1992-2006)
Founding member + board-member and newsletter editor of International Maritime Health Association (IMHA) 2001-2005
Secretary, chair-elect + newsletter editor, & chair, Section for Cruise Ship and Maritime Medicine of American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) 1996-2004
Dr Ellen Welch
- MBChB, MRCEM, MRCGP, DTMH, DFSRH
Dr Ellen Welch
Ellen currently works as Chief Doctor with Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines and has been working in the industry since 2008. Between contracts at sea she is based in the UK, in Central London, where she works as a General Practitioner with an interest in women’s health and contraception. She holds the Diploma of the Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Health and is trained to fit contraceptive implants and intrauterine devices.
Ellen graduated from the University of Liverpool in 2004 and initially underwent training in Emergency Medicine. After working as a ship’s doctor, she realized she enjoyed the continuity of care involved in looking after a multicultural crew, and returned to the Lake District in Cumbria to retrain as a General Practitioner. She has experience working in many specialty areas, chiefly Emergency and General medicine (adult and paediatric), Travel and Tropical medicine, Obstetrics & Gynaecology, ENT, Psychiatry and Orthopaedics. She has worked in a variety of roles around the world, including as a ski field doctor in New Zealand, an expedition medic in Tanzania, and an event medic at several Glastonbury Festivals. Ellen has a BA in medical journalism and has written several award winning medical textbooks
Dr Elsa Kan
- MBBS, MHA
Dr Elsa Kan
Elsa currently serves as the Director of Medical and Public health for Royal Caribbean Cruises, APAC Region.
After completing her bachelor degree in medicine & surgery at University of Sydney in 1999, Elsa trained and served in emergency and critical care with Western Sydney Area Health, and had received her master’s degree in health administration in 2004.
Elsa joined Royal Caribbean Cruises in 2005 and has been ship’s physician since, serving on-board Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, and Skysea Cruise Ships.
In 2016 Elsa joined Royal Caribbean’s China (Shanghai) Office and has since assumed her current role.
Dr Nathi Zindela
Dr Nathi Zindela
Bonginkosi M.N. Zindela commonly known as Nathi.
Nathi is currently working as a doctor for HEMS helicopter operations in respect of contracts executed at diverse destinations throughout the world for an independent private company.
Nathi has over 11 years of experience as an emergency doctor, cruise ship physician and most recent, helicopter doctor. He qualified in 2005 with a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery degree from the University of KwaZulu Natal, Nelson Mandela School of Medicine in South Africa. His work experience involves a multidisciplinary involvement in most of the major specialties in his early professional years as an intern and community service medical officer in 2006-2008 with most time cumulatively spent in the emergency department.
After working as a medical officer at a rural district hospital in Ceres, he further enrolled in the Family Medicine programme as a registrar where he also worked at Worcester Regional Hospital (Western Cape, South Africa).
Nathi then diverted his career in late 2010 and decided to join the cruise ship industry and worked as a physician/senior physician on board an array of ships for Royal Caribbean Cruises International and Celebrity Cruises for a total of 6 years providing medical end emergency care.
- RN, CEN, CFRN
Steve Williams has over 30 years of experience as an emergency flight nurse, emergency manager and disaster responder. He started his career training as a registered nurse in the UK and then worked in Central America before moving to the US in 1989. Starting work in a New York City trauma center, Steve then moved to South Florida in 1990, working at Mount Sinai Medical Center, Emergency Department. In 1993 Steve took up the position as Director of Emergency Services at Mount Sinai Medical Center on Miami Beach. Steve also served as Chief Flight Nurse for the South Florida Lifeflight helicopter program until 1999 flying over 2,000 hours with critically ill and injured patients on an S76 and also MEDEVAC flights with the US Coast Guard.
Steve has spent the last 17 years running medical operations for Carnival Cruise Lines and more recently Royal Caribbean where he supervised a team of 85 physicians and 165 nurses providing medical and emergency care on 40 cruise ships worldwide. Steve led the design team that developed the first electronic medical record for cruise ships, established the first CARE teams in the cruise industry and implemented a whole fresh blood transfusion program at RCCL.
A graduate of the US Air Force School of Aerospace Medicine, Critical Care Air Transport course, Steve has been an Advanced Cardiac Life Support Instructor for over 18 years. Steve also sits on the State of Florida Steering Committee for the State Medical Response System. He serves as Deputy Team Commander for the International Medical Surgical Response Team, part of the US federal government, National Disaster Medical System.
In 2006 Steve was asked by the State of Florida to lead development of the Florida Advanced Surgical & Transport Team and most recently served as Team Commander for the FIU-FAST Team before joining MSC Cruises.
In May of 2017 Steve joined MSC Cruises as Deputy Fleet Medical Director where he now works.
- RN, ICF ACTP, CCP
Paula Cruz has 15 years of experience as a Registered Nurse, mainly as emergency care nurse, both in hospital settings and pre-hospital care, cruise ships, oil rigs, as certified trainer, nursing manager and coach. Originally trained in Lisbon, Portugal, Paula started working abroad on and off in 2006, initially for Carnival Cruise Lines as ship’s nurse, and later for Royal Caribbean, where Paula was invited to work as the senior clinical trainer in support of the deployment of a fleetwide clinical software program.
From 2012 to 2015 Paula was part of the Emergency Room startup team of one of the busiest hospitals at the great area of Lisbon, contributed to its Joint Comission International Certification, and worked for the Portuguese National Institute of Medical Emergency, where she integrated their ALS/Trauma teams, being also trained to work in collaboration with the Portuguese National Air Force, for cases of helicopter rescue at sea.
In 2015 Paula accepted the invitation to work for the brand new Viking Ocean Cruises as Fleet Nurse, Consultant for the startup of the medical centers and clinical Trainer. Nowadays Paula is the Nursing Director of a group of private clinics at the great area of Lisbon.
- Registered Nurse
- International Coaching Federation Accredited Coach Training Program
- Certificado Competências Pedagógicas (certified trainer)
- Emergency Medicine Captain, Boca Raton Fire Rescue Services
President, Emergency Medical Consultants, Inc.
Shaun Fix has been practicing and teaching in the hospital and pre hospital field since 1983. He holds a degree in Emergency Medical Service Management has been faculty at several colleges. Shaun is the president of Emergency Medical Consultants, Inc and a company officer in charge of Emergency Medicine for Boca Raton Fire Rescue Services in the Palm Beach area of South Florida. Shaun has presented programs at State, National and International Conferences and has appeared on FETN, Pulse, 24-7 EMS, Medic Monthly, and Emergency Medical Update Videos. A frequent lecturer, author and consultant, Shaun is best known for keeping his programs upbeat and relevant while bringing “the reality of emergency medicine” to the classroom setting. Shaun is the author of the Brady text, Success in ACLS and recently completed writing the book Safety and Survival in Emergency Medicine.
Shaun and the team from Emergency Medical Consultants train over 20,000 professionals around the country each year. This group was one of the original “on board” training providers for cruise ship medical center staff, bringing programs such as ACLS, BLS, Trauma Management and Emergency Airway Skills directly to the ship starting in 1994.
They continue to provide customized shipboard and shore side programs for maritime medical staff regularly.
Check them out at http://www.MedicalTraining.cc