Friday, March 12, 2010 12:00 AM

Chinese delegation researches Fresno Heart & Surgical Hospital's technology

Fresno Heart & Surgical showed off the latest in operating room technology on March 8 to a delegation from China being sponsored by the Lyles Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at California State University, Fresno.

The Chinese information systems professionals, hospital administrators and physicians were visibly impressed by a “Live from the OR” demonstration of bariatric weight-loss surgery by Dr. Kelvin Higa. Dr. Higa, who teaches his surgical techniques internationally, was able to interact from the operating room with the delegation watching from the hospital’s conference room.

“The audience was very enthusiastic and asked lots of questions.  The cultural difference made it exciting and challenging to demonstrate our technology.   I felt the “Live from OR” demonstration was a great way for them to view it,” said registered nurse Robin Ryder, coordinator of the hospital’s Bariatric & Metabolic Surgery Program.

“The demonstration was well received and there was a noticeable reaction by the delegates as Dr. Higa inserted the camera into the patient showing a better than live view of the digestive system and laparoscopic surgical instruments,” said Jonathon Anderson, head of the IT department at Fresno Heart & Surgical. 

Fresno State officials chose Fresno Heart & Surgical Hospital as one of a few options to host this event, because of such technological advances and the hospital’s innovative approaches.

Fresno Heart & Surgical’s representatives discussed the current health information system and future plans to integrate with the Epic system to put clinical records online so they would be accessible at portable bedside computers and remotely from physicians’ offices.

The Chinese delegation asked about technology uses, specific challenges at Fresno Heart & Surgical and regulation compliance matters.  Government involvement in healthcare was also on the list of topics discussed as well as the contracting process for reimbursement rates.   The event ended with a brief view of the Electronic Medical Record software and a tour of the hospital. 

This story was reported by Ashley Gunland. She can be reached through