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SEE HOW IT WORKS: New robotic system designed to help South Georgia patients recover faster

The da Vinci® Single Site Surgical System allows SGMC surgeons to perform complex general surgery on patients across South Georgia.
Posted at 5:46 PM, Oct 17, 2023
  • South Georgia Medical Center now offers patients the da Vinci® Single Site Surgical System.
  • It is a sophisticated robotic platform that offers a state-of-the-art minimally invasive option for major surgery.
  • Watch the video to see how South Georgia patients recover from surgery.


Looks like I’m playing a video game right? Well look again.

I’m Malia Thomas, in Valdosta, and I’m testing out SGMC’s new DaVinci machine to see how it will help patients recover from surgery.

"If I could get one of these to my house, I wouldn't mind taking out the trash or doing the dishes more."

Meet Valdosta neighbor Calvin Harrison.

He's a rehab tech at South Georgia Medical Center.

He is also working on his Master's in Healthcare Administration.

He's also had gallbladder surgery.

"They did my procedure so I could leave the same day, using less invasive methods such as this one, to have a speedy recovery so I can be in and out the hospital."

"This one" he's referring to is the daVinci Single Site Surgical System.

It's SGMC's newly acquired robot that offers a minimally invasive option for major surgery.

SGMC's general surgeon Dr. Howard Bowers shows me how it works.

"Oftentimes we'll have to insert push and pull at the same time which is very challenging but with the robot I have wristed instruments that make it much more fluid."

Calvin tells me equipment like the daVinci is sorely needed in this part of Georgia.

"It's kind of what we need in this area. We have a lot of this going on we have people who need these kinds of procedures to be handled and for them to have to travel too far away to get there it kind of like takes away from our drive as a healthcare facility."

Those procedures Calvin is talking about includes:

  • Advanced Infertility Procedures
  • Pelvic Pain Procedures
  • And Certain Cancer Surgeries

I was told the device is covered by insurance.

Calvin tells me he can't wait to see it in action while he's working with patients.

Makes me feel like a superhero. Put these scrubs on, it's my super suit."

The DaVinci test will be in the SGMC lobby for anyone wanting to test it out. I’m Malia Thomas, ABC27.