Students pose as patients
The students were invited to pose as patients at an emergency room on Sunday, Sept. 28, for a course that trained interns to become trauma doctors. They were painted as trauma victims at Christus Spohn Hospital Memorial, Corpus Christi.
The students arrived at the hospital on Sunday morning and were sent down to the basement to pick the injury they wanted to portray. They chose folders with patient's medical situation that ranged from falling 35 feet to being shot multiple times. Using the injuries described as a guide, make-up artists turned the students into victims using latex wax and lots of fake blood.
Senior Becky McCall was modeled as a 20-year-old female who had hit a pole with her vehicle and had been flung out of the car windshield. Her injuries included a gash on her cheek and a bruise to her left side.
Junior Joey Fries was modeled as a construction worker who had fallen 35 feet from scaffolding. His injuries included a chest contusion and a skull fracture.
Senior Chloe Tugwell was modeled as a 21-year-old female involved with a robbery at a liqueur store. Her injuries included two bullet wounds, one to the neck and one to the chest.
Junior Ashley Hendricks was modeled as a female involved in a bar fight. Her injuries included bruising on her face and a stab wound on the back that punctured her lung.
Finally, Senior Katie Fries was modeled as a 24-year-old female in her third trimester of pregnancy who was involved in a car accident which killed the driver, her husband. Her injuries included a deep gash to her forehead, a broken pelvis and bruising along her legs and arms.
Once they looked like incoming emergency room patients, they were taught how to act like them. Each student was paired off with one of the doctors who were teaching the interns how to deal with emergencies. These doctors described the effects each student would feel if they had actually experienced the injuries. Some students had little acting to do, as they would have been rendered unconscious by their wounds, while others had to put on a show for the intern, collapsing as they were being examined.
The 32 interns training to become trauma doctors were paired in teams of two and sent to three rooms that contained both a student "victim" and a trauma doctor. They would practice first, describing what they would do before the patient arrived, how they would stabilize their patient and how they would get them transferred to a bigger hospital. During their practice, their partner would critique them along with the doctor in the room.
In the second room, they switched roles, and critiqued their partners.
Finally, they were on their own and would have their final exam, where they had to describe all the procedures necessary to treat their patient, and see if they could make it as a trauma doctor.
The process lasted six hours, and the students were each paid $75 for their work, although they all agreed they would have done it for free.
"I never thought getting stabbed in the back could be so fun," said Hendricks.
Each student has been placed on the list of those called to be models for these events, and will be able to participate in the training again in the future.