Mount's 3-D Anatomy Visualization System

A virtual ribbon cutting was held Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2021, for the new 3-D Anatomy Visualization System at Mount Aloysius College. Pictured (from left) are Nicole Custer, nursing department chairwoman; John McKeegan, Mount Aloysius president; and Wes King, director of Nursing & Health Technology.

CRESSON – With the addition of the Anatomage Table health science students at Mount Aloysius College now have a new educational tool in their arsenal to start the spring semester.

Representatives of the college debuted the state-of-the-art device at a ribbon cutting ceremony Tuesday.

“The future of health care is being nimble and adaptive to technology, and this Anatomage Table is at the forefront,” President John McKeegan said.

The machine is similar to a touchscreen television, but is capable of a variety of advanced operations using hi-resolution 4-K images from 3-D cadaver dissections to in-depth anatomy visualizations.

Mount Aloysius paid for the device with a $100,000 grant from the George I. Alden Trust that was awarded roughly one year ago.

There are four subjects, male and female, to work with as well as animals.

The Anatomage unit can stand up for larger class display or be laid down for closer inspection.

It also has HDMI ports that allow the images on the table to be projected on external monitors.

Wesley King, director of nursing and health technology, provided a demonstration of the device.

He showed how the 3-D subjects can be manipulated and the different human structures that can be shown.

“The sky’s the limit with this thing,” he said.

King clicked through actual images of the human skeleton, muscular and nervous system, displayed name tags for various parts of the body and simulated a chest dissection.

As he worked, he was able to “dive down deeper” into the inner-workings of the human anatomy, isolating arteries, bones and even organs, such as the heart, to examine more closely.

Nicole Custer, department of nursing chairwoman, said the table will provide students with the opportunity to apply and visualize theories and concepts better.

There’s built-in software to allow quizzes to be completed as well.

Another benefit of the table is that it’ll be a money-saver for the Mount.

“The sustainable digital format eliminates cost and lab maintenance fees such as ventilation systems, specimen purchases and disposal fees,” Vice President for Institutional Advancement John Farkas said. 

At the college, health science students account for around 55% of the total enrollment.

McKeegan said Mount Aloysius is a “primary feeder” for the health care employers in the area.

There are a variety of associate and bachelor degrees available in the field from nursing, to physical therapy, surgical technology and medical imaging, and they all will have access to the device.

“This is part of our future,” McKeegan said. “It’s a terrific day for the Mount.”

During the presentation, both U.S. Reps. Glenn “G.T.” Thompson, R-Centre, 15th Congressional District, and John Joyce, R-Blair, 13th Congressional District, spoke about the addition to the school.

Joyce called it a “game-changing development” for health science majors, while Thompson described the unit as an “incredible piece of technology” that will better prepare students to give back to their communities.

Joshua Byers is a reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. Follow him on Twitter @Journo_Josh.

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