TULSA, Okla. – Fab Lab Tulsa unveiled its new 3D printing technology to help medical students study anatomy more closely.
"We're going to be integrating this to our programming that we do with medical students as well as occupational and physical therapy students," explains Nathan Pritchett, the Executive Director of Fab Lab Tulsa.
The nonprofit helped more than 4,600 students in 2017 through innovative technology to advance in their fields.
The new printer was purchased through a grant by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Oklahoma.
"It's part of our Healthy Kids, Healthy Families grant," says Dr. Joseph Cunningham, "This was one of them to help the lives of children and families."
Dr. Cunningham, the Chief Medical Officer with Blue Cross Blue Shield, says this is a unique opportunity for students to continue learning in a hands-on way.
"We had mostly textbooks that had artists' renditions of these very small pieces of anatomy. It's really hard to see something on a piece of paper," says Dr. Cunningham of his experience in medical school.
While students are studying body parts on training labs with cadavers, the new piece of technology gives them a different perspective.
"A training lab on cadavers is very expensive, and while I know these 3D printers are not cheap, they're a lot less expensive than that, and you can reproduce the same work over and over again," says Dr. Cunningham.
The grant also helped purchase another piece of equipment, the PCB milling machine, which will help foster invention in the health care field.
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