Madisonville Community College s Surgical First Assistant program has entered
into a distance learning agreement with UK HealthCare to provide training for their
surgical technologists. Currently, there are seven UK HealthCare employees enrolled
in the Surgical First Assistant program and scheduled to complete the program in May.
As defined by the American College of Surgeons, the Surgical First Assistant provides
aid in exposure, hemostasis, and other technical functions that will help the surgeon
carry out a safe operation with optimal results for the patient. This role will vary
considerably with the surgical operation, specialty area, and type of facility. Clinical
skills performed under direct supervision of the surgeon may include positioning the
patient, preparing the skin, providing visualization of the operative site, utilizing
appropriate techniques to assist with hemostasis, participating in volume replacement
or auto transfusion techniques as appropriate, utilizing appropriate techniques to
assist with closure of body planes, selecting and applying appropriate wound dressings,
and providing assistance in securing drainage system to tissue.
Student and UK HealthCare employee Shellie Robbins stated, Performing my clinical
for the Surgical First Assistant class has been rewarding. With UK being a teaching
hospital, students have a better learning experience. The attending, fellows, residents,
and p.a. s have all been excellent resources of knowledge. We get to do all different
kinds of cases that we normally wouldn t get to see at smaller hospitals.
MCC s Surgical First Assistant Program Director/Professor Jeff Bidwell maintains communication
with the clinical educators at UK HealthCare. So far all the students are on track
to finish the program in May. They seem very pleased and I anticipate them continuing
to send some of their employees to the program yearly, noted Bidwell.
Fellow student Samantha Steller shared, I think that the distance learning program
is a great way for those who do not live close to the campus to participate in continuing
their education without having to travel to do so. It allows people to pursue their
The Surgical First Assistant Program at Madisonville Community College is the first
nationally accredited program by CAAHEP (Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health
Education Programs). Graduates from this program are eligible to take the national
certifying exam for First Assistant offered through the National Board of Surgical
Technology and Surgical Assisting (CSFA) or the National Surgical Assistant Association
For additional program information, contact MCC s Enrollment Center at (270) 824-8621
or contact Bidwell at (270) 824-1740.