Written by Areli Rodriguez, EWH's Communications & Development Intern

Although theory-based lectures teach students a great deal about biomedical equipment and how it works, working with the equipment boosts their learning to new levels. At the BMET training program in Nigeria, students got to do just that.

During their first session, the BMET students were presented with a challenge: rebuild an Ohmeda anesthesia machine that had been stripped to the frame and restore it to working order. Accompanied by the assistant OTGC Charles, the students looked for parts they could use in a warehouse at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH). They also made use of LUTH’s fabrication workshop to make Plexiglas covers and braces that the anesthesia machine needed. After testing their fabricated parts and correcting a few design errors, they successfully rebuilt a functioning anesthesia machine that fulfilled manufacturer guidelines! After debating what should be done with the equipment, the students decided to donate the anesthesia machine to the local jail so that prisoners there would be able to receive better and more robust healthcare.

One of the best parts of this experience, students said, was being able to help save lives in their community. It instilled them with pride and a newfound passion for their profession.

Before                                                                                 After

Next, the students learned about sterilizers by reverse engineering a table-top sterilizer and going on a field trip to LUTH with OTGC Joseph to look at the large sterilizers used for the operating room. The students were then allowed to use test equipment to see how concepts they had previously learned about in lecture, such as voltage and current, are applied in the design and function of biomedical technology. This experience proved to be a game-changer in their understanding of electronics.


Students gather around a table-top sterilizer to measure voltage and current

The twenty-five students finished their first session feeling ready to practice their profession, helping save lives by saving equipment. During their next session, they will learn about ventilators and ICU equipment, while continuing their lectures on electronics, anatomy, physiology, inventory, and preventative maintenance.

Preparations are already being made to welcome the class of 2018 next year!