BioSkills of North Texas celebrates one-year anniversary

Anatomy Lab At UnthscThe BioSkills of North Texas — a full-service facility with flexible space and a range of unique services — recently celebrated one year of operation at The University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth.

For the past year, this 8,000-square-foot state-of-the-art facility has provided medical professionals and students the opportunity to train and improve their skills in a safe, nurturing environment. The lab offers a unique setting for hands-on clinical training of health care professionals on cutting-edge surgical procedures, as well as classroom space to accommodate events with up to 300 participants.

“The BNT lab gives us a chance to provide both current and future health care workers the chance to practice before they treat a real patient,” said Tyler Johnson, assistant manager at BioSkills of North Texas. “This gives them the chance to truly learn and grow skills without the pressure that comes with living patients.”

Prior to the BNT opening, accommodating outside groups and HSC students simultaneously was a challenge. Since the university is a premier health science center, students took priority in scheduling, but that created a conflict of interest with outside vendors who were willing to pay to use the space.

“Balancing the educational side with the business side of the Willed Body Program became incredibly challenging,” Johnson said. “Thanks to the BNT, we are able to easily accommodate everyone and make both students and vendors a priority.”

The additional space the BNT lab provides has allowed HSC to host 131 training events, booked by 30 different vendors, in the past year — with 55 of those training events organized by internal student research studies or clubs. Some groups come monthly, and some train in the lab as often as once a week.

Learners can book the lab for a weekend or even week-long events to practice a wide range of skills, including pacemaker sensor placement, sinus surgeries, transplant recovery training, orthopedic placements, nerve extremity repairs and more. The lab also offers the opportunity for student organizations to have guided training sessions.

Thanks to donations from the Willed Body Program, external groups have the option to lease the remains of those who have contributed to the advancement of medicine. Other anatomy labs, teaching hospitals and military hospitals can also temporarily train using these donated remains.

Not only has the BNT lab caught the attention of local vendors, organizations from around the world — Kansas, Washington state, Michigan, Indiana and even Israel — have reached out wanting to bring their teams in to train.

“We get calls and emails daily asking to host events at our lab,” Johnson said. “The impact this lab is making on the medical community nationwide is incredible to see.”

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