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Congressman Gets Close Look ‘Inside’ Human Body at Clovis Medical School



Rep. Jim Costa with CHSU administrators Drs. Anne VanGarsse, John Graneto, and Mark Okamoto on a TV screen alongside a hologram of a human body. (CHSU photo)
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Rep. Jim Costa’s medical knowledge expanded somewhat on a recent visit to the College of Osteopathic Medicine at California Health Science University in Clovis and included learning more about anatomy through holograms.

Specially designed software lets medical students get a closer look at bones, muscles, and other body systems without having to cut open a cadaver. CHSU uses the Case Western Reserve University’s software suite with the Microsoft HoloLens 2 headgear.

Costa, D-Fresno, also toured the simulation center and met “Pedro,” one of the high-fidelity, tetherless mannequins that can simulate breathing, crying, moving, talking, and having a pulse, in the center’s emergency/intensive care unit.

The July 8 visit was Costa’s first to the new medical school.

Given the chronic lack of doctors and nurses in the Valley — a problem that the coronavirus pandemic worsened and that directly impacts access to quality health care — CHSU’s role in training medical students is crucial, Costa told GV Wire.

“During my visit, I saw firsthand the use of cutting-edge technology that is providing the next generation of doctors and health care providers with the tools they need to provide quality care to patients. Growing our own doctors is an important way to confront this physician shortage and improve access to healthcare for everyone in the Valley and other regions that are underserved.”

Rep. Jim Costa views “Pedro,” a medical mannequin at California Health Sciences University. (CHSU photo)

Growing Valley’s Health Care Workforce

During Costa’s visit, CHSU President Flo Dunn provided an overview of the college’s founding, its local economic impact, and plans for future growth.

CHSU was founded in 2012 by the Assemi family with the goal to increase the number of health care providers in the Valley, traditionally an underserved part of the state. (Disclosure: GV Wire Publisher Darius Assemi is on the university’s board of trustees.)

The university, which also includes the College of Pharmacy, is considering adding up to eight additional health sciences colleges and allied health programs such as physician assistant and occupational therapy.

“We are proud to have Congressman Jim Costa visit our state-of-the-art medical school for the first time since COVID restrictions have been lifted,” Dunn told GV Wire. “Congressman Costa is a longtime champion for medical education and proponent for expanded graduate medical education in the Central Valley.”

Nancy Price is a multimedia journalist for GV Wire. A longtime reporter and editor who has worked for newspapers in California, Florida, Alaska, Illinois and Kansas, Nancy joined GV Wire in July 2019. She previously worked as an assistant metro editor for 13 years at The Fresno Bee. Nancy earned her bachelor's and master's degrees in journalism at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. Her hobbies include singing with the Fresno Master Chorale and volunteering with Fresno Filmworks. You can reach Nancy at 559-492-4087 or Send an Email