New Vision students identify wheelchair need, help GGH bring many back into service – Finger Lakes Times

Partly cloudy skies. Low around 5F. Winds W at 5 to 10 mph..
Partly cloudy skies. Low around 5F. Winds W at 5 to 10 mph.
Updated: January 29, 2022 @ 11:23 pm
Students from the New Vision Medical Careers Program spearheaded a project that put more than two-dozen wheelchairs in need of repair back into use at Geneva General Hospital.
Students from the New Vision Medical Careers Program spearheaded a project that put more than two-dozen wheelchairs in need of repair back into use at Geneva General Hospital.
Students from the New Vision Medical Careers Program spearheaded a project that put more than two-dozen wheelchairs in need of repair back into use at Geneva General Hospital.

Students from the New Vision Medical Careers Program spearheaded a project that put more than two-dozen wheelchairs in need of repair back into use at Geneva General Hospital.
Students from the New Vision Medical Careers Program spearheaded a project that put more than two-dozen wheelchairs in need of repair back into use at Geneva General Hospital.
Students from the New Vision Medical Careers Program spearheaded a project that put more than two-dozen wheelchairs in need of repair back into use at Geneva General Hospital.
GENEVA — Students from the New Vision Medical Careers Program at Geneva General Hospital identified a service project with real-life impact that would improve patient care during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Seventeen area high school seniors from five districts who rotate through more than 20 departments across the hospital noted that when they were on the Transport rotation that more wheelchairs could increase efficiency at GGH. With the hospital at surge capacity level with a higher number of inpatients and emergency department patients, the New Vision students on acute care units had limited wheelchairs available when needed. They were aware that there were some wheelchairs in various stages of repair being stored in long-term care.
The students took the critical step to repurpose as many of the existing wheelchairs as possible for use with patients and residents. They worked with biomedical services and facilities to assess the chairs, perform “triage,” and repair chairs for use.
Not only was this an ideal project in which students identified a problem that enhanced efficiency, increased patient satisfaction, and leveraged in-demand resources, they also selected a community service project whereby they could use their skills and time to impact patient experience with near-immediate results.
“The New Vision students give so much of themselves to our organization, inspire us with their energy and drive,” said Lara Chatel Turbide, vice president of community services at Finger Lakes Health. “It is very fitting that they would breathe new life into this equipment, as their presence here at Finger Lakes Health always reinvigorates our staff. Our mentors often comment on how teaching these students reaffirms their dedication to healthcare.”
For the project, the students repaired 73 out-of-use wheelchairs and had them reviewed/approved for use by a qualified FLH technician. Ultimately, they were able to repurpose 22 wheelchairs (13 regular and 9 extra-wide). They identified three more that could be put into service with technician support, and 10 specialized chairs for use. They also categorized and organized parts of the other incomplete wheelchairs.
“This was a great project that we could plan, implement and complete in a week and make a substantial impact for the organization!” exclaimed New Visions program instructor Laura VanNiel.
“It feels so good to give back to the hospital because they do so much for the community and our learning,” Geneva High School student Sophie Heieck said.
“It is empowering that we as New Vision students could solve a hospital-based problem,” Waterloo High School student Lillian Szewc added.
“This project increased my awareness,” shared Mynderse Academy student Amy Mahoney. “I find I’m more attentive to the staff’s and patients’ needs.”
The New Vision Medical Careers Program is a 27-year partnership between Finger Lakes Technical and Career Center and Finger Lakes Health.
In addition to Heieck, Szewc and Mahoney, the following students make up the Class of 2022: Nick Caster, Nakayba Moorer, Megan Taylor, and Juliette Ventura of Geneva; Gracie Ferguson and Samantha Page of Waterloo; Hannah DeJohn, Elena Graf, Alexis Waite, and Mackenzie Wheeler of Midlakes; Paityn Lloyd and Reanna VanAken of Red Jacket; and Flora Lin and Abigail Lynch of Mynderse (Seneca Falls).
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