SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - Students at South University took a break from their own coursework to help send needed medical supplies to Third World Countries.
Inside South University's Operating Room Simulation Lab, students in the Anesthesiologist Assistants Program can prepare for everything involved with surgery, including the unexpected.
"I do not have a pulse. Okay, start compressions, Daniel. I have to get an airway in..."
The same state-of-the-art equipment found in hospital ORs helps give students an appreciation for the pressures and procedures of an actual surgery.
"Working as a team, we come up with different roles and immediately figure out who does what,"
"We do surveys every year with our past graduates and everyone wants more sim time because it's just a great learning environment,"
"Hopefully, this is something we won't see regularly, but when we do, we've at least been through it before, so we have some familiarity with that,"
They have learned enough to know that many students - even doctors in some parts of the world - don't have the same level of equipment and can't offer the same care to surgery patients.
These students raised money to buy pulse oxymeters for third world countries. It's a routine surgical device here that is unavailable in many poor parts of the world.
"Because a lot of times you can't tell a person's oxygenation just by looking at him pr visual signs, so it gives them a way to tell the intubation of the blood,"
The students' chili cookoff last weekend raised more than $4,000 for Life Box - enough for the organization to provide more than a dozen pulse oxymeters to parts of Africa and South America.
"That would provide a whole hospital and be in every surgery and save countless lives,"
That was the incentive for these students to take time away from a demanding program and concentrate their efforts elsewhere for one day.
"they're just a great group. My husband came and said these are just great people. They're working hard, they're going to be great members of society and provide a great service, and it's rewarding and gratifying to step outside yourself sometimes and serve people in ways that you understand how important it is,"
Life Box, the organization that will deliver the devices to Third World countries is in partnership with the American Society of Anesthesiologists.