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Spotlight On: Dr. Maureen Terranova, RSF Board Member

Dr. Maureen Terranova may be one of RSF’s newest board members, but she has wasted no time bringing some very cool tech to show Rhinebeck students.

Maureen Terranova

In late September, Dr. Terranova will host a demonstration of the advanced da Vinci surgical system robot for about 50 RHS students at Northern Dutchess Hospital, where she practices.

The da Vinci system, recently acquired by NDH, is a truly amazing abdominal surgery robot that includes four robotic arms controlled by a human surgeon from a console. The surgeon uses the robotic arms to control surgical instruments, but the arms have a jointed-wrist design that is actually steadier and more flexible than the human hand. The da Vinci System greatly improves laparoscopic surgery, allowing the surgeon to perform the operation seated instead of standing, while looking into a 3D viewfinder in line with the instruments instead of having to look away from the patient into a 2D monitor.

The RHS students (as well as Red Hook students, who will also be participating) will not only see a demonstration of the da Vinci system, but will also get to operate a demo version of the robot. This event is just the beginning for Dr. Terranova, who is excited about forging a new and close relationship between the RCSD and NDH. In addition to demonstrations of da Vinci and other high-tech equipment at NDH, Dr. Terranova hopes to expose local students to the science and practice of medicine and encourage budding premeds along the way. She envisions programs for students that allow them to volunteer at the hospital and also shadow professional staff.

Dr. Terranova has been in Rhinebeck for about 13 years, when she moved here and established her OB/Gyn practice. Before Rhinebeck, Dr. Terranova did her residency at Long Island Jewish, after attending Cornell as an undergrad followed by medical school at Albany Med. Completing her sterling New York credentials, Dr. Terranova hails originally from Ulster County, just across the Hudson, so moving to Dutchess County felt like coming home.

She has been involved with RSF as a parent volunteer for almost seven years, getting involved when her oldest was just starting at Chancellor and her love for science and public education made involvement with RSF easy.

Dr. Terranova wishes to promote an interdisciplinary approach to education. The da Vinci project includes not only medicine, but also physics, engineering and the biosciences. Dr. Terranova wants to ensure that students are exposed to the broad range of interrelated topics and disciplines that will face them in today’s ever more complex world.

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