Coliseum Health System

Anyone watching the news knows healthcare is an ever-growing industry. So we head down to Macon to visit one of the area’s largest employers: Coliseum Health System, where we learn that you don’t have to be a doctor to be one of their 1,300+ employees! In fact, sometimes a high school education and a certificate or two are all you need to find a great job. On a different "note," we have a sing-along, hear an extremely moving story, and enjoy one of our weirdest Teachable Moments ever!

 Jobs in Healthcare

Jobs in Healthcare

We learn about different healthcare-related jobs, titles, and requirements: Lab Tech, Med Tech, CNA, and more.

Why Urine Is Tested

Why Urine Is Tested

Learn why urine is tested and what the results indicate about your health.

Historic Heartland

Special Thanks To

Jan Beeland, City of Macon


A Fast Forward Sing-A-Long:

SUSAN: The foot bone's connected to the anklebone.

SHERRIE: The knee bone's connected to the hipbone.

RYAN: The Hipbone's connect to the...pelvis (LAUGH)

ROBIN: The knee bones connected to the anklebone-possibly...

RYAN: You see I'm an orthopedic nurse so I want to list the actual bones... S1's connected to S2...

SARA: You put your left foot in; you put your left foot out and that's it's all about...


VO: Welcome to another episode of Fast Forward. Today we're Macon our way to a town just south of Atlanta to visit one of the area's biggest employer's--Coliseum Health Systems. I'll let some of their employees fill you in.

ROBIN: Coliseum Health Systems is based in Macon, GA and we have 3 facilities in Macon- Coliseum Medical Centers, Coliseum Northside Hospital and Coliseum Center For Behavioral Health. All total, we have about 1,350 employees, and over 400 physicians on our medical staff.

SHERRIE: I'm a certified nursing assistant. CNA's do any and everything. We're physical therapists. We're secretaries. We do it all.

RYAN: I'm an RN. I'm the clinical coordinator for the orthopedic spine floor.

SARA: I am a monitor technician for the hospital. I monitor the EKG's from the ICU...

LEAH: I'm a medical technologist. That means I work in the laboratory and run tests on patient specimens in the lab.

VO: While we're talking about lab work, I've always wondered what they're looking for when they test people's urine. So...

LEAH: Urine store for a teachable moment about your pee.

VO: See what we did there?


VO: Yeah. I know. Let's just find out why they test urine.

SHERRIE: It indicates a lot of things...if your potassium is low, if you're sodium is low, if you're under the influence.

RYAN: Also if there's an infection, you can tell by increased white blood cell count, or bacteria in the urine or blood.

VO: But wait! That's not all! Just the color of your urine is useful information.

LEAH: It'll be a lighter yellow color if you've had enough water...and darker if you have not and are becoming dehydrated...

VO: And so-

LEAH: Your pee is who you are.

SHERRIE: This is the weirdest teachable moment we have had. (SMILE)

VO: Agreed. So let's get back to Coliseum. When you think about jobs in hospitals, most people think of doctors. But there are a lot of other jobs too. So let's get a little more info on those.

ROBIN: In the healthcare field, the different types of jobs require different degrees. For instance you may just need a high school degree to perform some jobs in a hospital. Some jobs may require an under graduate degree and some may need a specialty degree; perhaps you can get from a tech school to perform that particular job in the healthcare field.

Nurses make up a majority of the employees, but we have lots of other jobs at Coliseum. For instance we have techs, or certified nursing assistants

VARIOUS: Unit secretary, respiratory therapy, environmental services, could be a dietician, ultrasound technician...people that work in the lab, pharmacy, physical therapist, phlebotomist...different diagnostic services, occupational therapist, medical assistant...

ROBIN: So there is a wide range of people who work at Coliseum Health Systems.

SUSAN: There's a very large demand for nurses, so nursing is a very good field to go into cause you're almost guaranteed a job.

VO: So how did you get into the medical field?

SHERRIE: I actually got certified in 11th grade. It's just a passion. Some people have a passion for taking care of other people and that's the reason why I got this job and I started working as a Certified-nursing assistant.

RYAN: My wife always knew she wanted to be a nurse. So I started doing research on it and thought this is a great way to make a living. Then I realized real quick that you have to really want to be in this profession. It's not just a shift job where you go to work and you're done. You really have to own it. You have to love it. You can't just show up and be absent.

VO: So I guess when you were kids, you just loved playing that game Operation. (BUZZER SOUND)

RYAN: Yes I did actually. I loved playing that game

SUSAN: I was pretty good at it. I was pretty good at operation. (LAUGHS)

JONI: When I was a kid, Operation was one of my favorite games. My favorite part was actually hearing the buzz.


JONI: I killed him all the time. (LAUGHS)

VO: Okay, seriously. What's the best thing about working in healthcare?

ROBIN: What's great about the healthcare field is that you feel like you're providing a great service to people. If your hospital is good, which ours is, then you feel like you're really doing a good thing.

SHERRIE: There was a patient I was feeding and she stopped breathing as I was feeding her. Then her mouth started to turn purple and blue. And then we called for the nurse to come in and the doctor had got in there and I got out the way. She ended up living. She survived. And it was a blessing that day for me, because she was just talking to me and was just calm, then in the blink of an eye somebody could stop breathing. So that was a day I'll never forget.

VO: Wow, great story, Sherrie. And that's why you get to bring us home, the same way we started.

SHERRIE: The shoulder bones connected to the head bone...There are all the bones! (LAUGHS)

Please don't put that in there cause that was so wrong.

VO: Don't worry; we won't just know you're invited back to sing with us anytime. Until then, we'll see the rest of you on our next episode of Fast Forward.

This content was developed under a grant from the U.S. Department of Education. However, this content does not necessarily represent the policy of the U.S. Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government.