Press Releases

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Minimally invasive surgery live streamed to more than 1,200 students from across the province

Pan Am Clinic and Sisler High School bringing interactive learning to a whole new level

More than 1,200 students from across the province will watch a surgeon reconstruct a ligament in a patient's knee during a one hour procedure that will be streamed online, thanks to the wonders of new technology.

While the minimally invasive surgery will take place this morning in one of the Operating Rooms in the Pan Am Clinic, it will be streamed directly into a classroom of about 35 grade 11 and 12 students at Sisler High School. From there, the video feed will be streamed using a protected Frontier School Division (FSD) bridge to nearly 1,200 students across Northern Manitoba.

The project is the achievement of a variety of health care and educational facilities whose goals include making high tech procedures more accessible to students.

They include: Sisler High School, the Pan Am Clinic, its Foundation, The Winnipeg School Division, Frontier School Division, and the WRHA.

"This will make the first time in Canada students will study an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury and watch a live reconstruction surgery streamed directly into their classrooms," Pan Am Clinic Chief Operating Officer Wayne Hildahl said.

"Our Foundation focuses on research, education and community outreach and this is an incredible opportunity for the Pan Am Clinic to bring learning and education into the community for these students," Jeff Leiter, Pan Am Clinic Foundation Executive Director, said. "It is one thing to read and learn about the medical sciences but it's very exciting for students to experience this learning through interacting with live surgery, and we are thrilled to work with Sisler High School to make this possible."

Sisler High School sets the bar for digital education and adapting the curriculum to allow learning to evolve within the ever-changing world of technology.

"Three years ago Sisler High School had vision of moving towards evolving the traditional classroom," George Heshka, principal of Sisler High School, said. "The foundation of this vision is to create opportunities for 21st century learners by providing them with real educational experiences through the use of cutting edge technology such as HD video conferencing, Bring Your Own Device (BYOD), inverted cross-curricular pedagogy, and the use of the Frontier School Division bridge, which allows multi-site video conferencing such as this interactive surgery with the Pan Am Clinic."

Sisler has received National and International medals and credit for their innovative digital classroom concepts and programs. The school was named one of 64 Pathfinder schools in the world by Microsoft and last fall they were invited to participate in the Microsoft Global Forum in Washington.

"The achievements and recognition over the last several years has been extremely exciting for the students and staff," said Jamie Leduc, Sisler's Business and Information Technology Department Head. "Our Digital Voices Web Design Course was recognized as a finalist for the Adobe® Educators' Choice Awards and the students finished second out of one thousand teams in the 2011-12 Cyber-Patriot competition. Our goal is to prepare future generations for a connected world, and given our recent accomplishments and events like this live surgery today we are well on our way to achieve this goal."

"The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority is committed to working towards advancing education and fostering public engagement," said Arlene Wilgosh, President and CEO of the WRHA. This live surgery is an exceptional opportunity to utilize the advanced video conferencing capabilities at the Pan Am Clinic and Sisler High School, so that students in communities across Manitoba can participate in this unique interactive learning experience."

Students will use a secure chat board and Twitter to pose questions to the students at Sisler to relay to the surgical team at the Pan Am Clinic. Schools participating in the surgery through the FSD bridge include St. John's High School, South East College, God's Lake School, Pequis School, Helen Betty Osborne, Grand Rapids School, Gillam School, West Lyn Heights, Frontier Collegiate, and students within the Manitoba First Nations Education Resource Centre.

The event is scheduled to begin at 9:30 A.M. and will be streamed in the library at Sisler High School. Media are welcome.

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