LECOM Students Send Powerful Message at Operation Prom

With prom season just around corner, students at the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine Bradenton, Fla., campus presented a sobering reminder about the dangers of drinking and driving.

“The prom is always a big deal, and you want the night to go well,” said first-year medical student Benjamin Kelley. “You make one bad decision; your whole life is ruined, and you have the consequences of that for the rest of your life.”

LECOM medical student Ryan Tucker prepares to be Bayflited out of Balvanz Stadium during Operation Prom at Bayshore High School.

The annual Operation Prom event simulates a course of action during an alcohol-related accident. LECOM students wearing realistic, injury simulating makeup and tattered clothing were positioned in and outside two mangled cars at Bayshore High School’s Balvanz Stadium.

As soon as dialog from a 911 call reporting an auto accident was broadcast over the stadium’s public-address system, members of the participating emergency services agencies sprung into action. Ambulances and fire trucks drove onto the field and rescue teams re-created the procedures in extracting the victims from the wreckage, rushing them to the hospital and investigating the accident.

Bayshore juniors and seniors watched as a deputy from the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office conducted a field sobriety test on the offending drunk driver, who was taken away in handcuffs and placed into a police car. A BayFlite helicopter landed at midfield and flew one of the injured students out of the stadium. One of the actors was pronounced “dead” at the scene. Her frantic mother collapsed into the arms of a deputy after hearing about her daughter’s death.

Bayshore principal David Underhill thanked LECOM and the emergency services personnel for the presentation and asked that the program continue every year, saying the program is just too important to skip a year.

The yearly event is sponsored by LECOM’s Emergency Medicine Club. Students participating included: Rachel Pamplin, Megan Sterling, Logan Pyle, Ashley Ludwig Jones, Katherine Lambert, Jared Mickelson, Sterling Haring, Tyler Neal, Joshua Milby, Ruth Mathis, Ryan Tucker, Samantha Donald and Benjamin Kelley.

The Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine and LECOM School of Pharmacy offer innovative and affordable education in osteopathic medicine and pharmacy. From campuses in Erie, Pennsylvania, Greensburg, Pennsylvania and Bradenton, Florida, LECOM provides student-centered pathways to prepare the next generation of healthcare professionals. Prepare yourself for medicine as your life’s profession.

April 26, 2011
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