Students see live surgery, spread awareness about organ and tissue donation
Students participating in the Organ and Tissue Donation Awareness program at Bellefonte Area High School have been working throughout the year to help bring awareness about organ and tissue donation. On March 14, 21 students visited the Whitaker Center for Science and the Arts, in Harrisburg, and attended a live presentation of a laparoscopic gastric sleeve surgery that took place at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. The students learned about the medical staff involved, surgical process and tools used to perform the surgery. During the surgery, Bellefonte Area students were also encouraged to ask questions of the head surgeon who answered in real time as the surgery took place. After the surgery, students spent a time at the museum before heading to the Gift of Life Family House in Philadelphia, where the staff at each facility gave tours and explained what they do and how they help individuals and families with a variety of needs before, during and after transplant surgery. Prior to making the trip, students held a drive to collect paper goods, which were then donated to the home during their visit. The trip was made possible by an Organ and Tissue Donation Awareness grant, the school’s second time receiving the $5,000 grant.