07/07/2020 | News release | Distributed by Public on 07/07/2020 16:33
BY KIRSTIN REED
For the first time in the program's six-year history, LVHN Health Care Explorers Day went virtual. Due to current restrictions preventing in-person events, physicians with Lehigh Valley Health Network found a creative way to host a virtual field trip inspiring students to one day pursue careers in health care.
Follow the journey along with seventh grade students from St. Thomas More School in Allentown.
Along with teddy bear patient Petunia,Martin Martino, MD, gynecologic oncologist withLVPG Gynecologic Oncology, andDavid Burmeister, DO, Chair, Department of Emergency and Hospital Medicine, took students through the hospital and demonstrated the role of different health care providers they encountered on the way.
Burmeister set the stage for the field trip with a reminder that LVHN is a safe place to receive care, and our colleagues are ready togive patients, like Petunia, the best possible care and experience.
Experiencing abdominal pain, Petunia arrived at LVHN byMedEvac helicopter. Her journey through the hospital was about to begin.
Lehigh Valley Cancer Institute
While Martino was in the middle of a discussion onthe importance of the HPV vaccine in preventing cervical cancer, he received a page notifying him of Petunia's arrival in the emergency room.
Lehigh Valley Reilly Children's Hospital
Petunia was seen in the ER and then transferred toLehigh Valley Reilly Children's Hospital, the community's only children's hospital, where she was evaluated byKris Rooney, MD, pediatric hospitalist, and her team. They determined that Petunia needed emergency surgery forappendicitis.
Lehigh Valley Heart Institute
Before Petunia was cleared for surgery, she needed an echocardiogram to ensure her heart was healthy.Robert Biggs, DO, cardiologist with LVPG Cardiology, demonstrated the anatomy of the heart for students and their families during the virtual trip throughLehigh Valley Heart Institute.
Lehigh Valley Institute for Surgical Excellence
Finally, it was time for Petunia to have her surgery. Martino prepared to perform lifesaving single-port robotic surgery. Lucky for Petunia, she found herself atLehigh Valley Institute for Surgical Excellence, with one of the largest, most advancedrobotics program in the region. Lehigh Valley Institute for Surgical Excellence is one of just 15 sites in the world to acquire theda Vinci SP® (single-port) robotic surgery system, which students had an opportunity to see during their virtual field trip.
After a successful surgery, Petunia was reunited with her family and began her recovery.
Exploring a career in health care
For students, the virtual field trip was an opportunity to see what often happens behind closed doors in the hospital. For physicians, this was an opportunity to show them not only the lifesaving work that occurs daily at LVHN, but also a chance to show them how much fun they have in their jobs.
Martino hopes that this is just the start of the virtual field trip program, and hopes to expand the opportunity to include seventh graders from Lehigh and Northampton counties in the fall.
Take the tour with Petunia: