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Peconic Bay Medical Center Hosts Robotics Club

Originally Posted: January 28, 2011

Riverhead - Recently, Westhampton Beach High School students had the unique opportunity to learn firsthand about the da Vinci Surgical® System from Dr. Hannah Ortiz, FACOG, FACS and Director of Peconic Bay Medical Center's Gynecologic Oncology Robotic Surgery Program.

The da Vinci system combines computer and robotic technologies to take surgical treatment to the next level by enabling doctors to perform delicate robot-assisted surgery with smaller incisions. The result is less pain, less blood loss and less scarring, lower risk of infection, faster recovery and a shorter hospital stay. Peconic Bay Medical Center is one of only two hospitals on the East End that uses the da Vinci to perform minimally invasive surgical procedures.

Dr. Hannah Ortiz, who has a passion for helping young people understand the advantages of science and technology in the medical field, is a mentor to the students of Westhampton Beach High School's Robotics Club. Through the use of a da Vinci training system, which the students got to utilize, a computer presentation and a Q&A session, Dr. Ortiz enabled students to visualize and learn the relevance and medical advantages of da Vinci's state-of-the-art robotic technology.

The fifth grade Student Council, who raised the most money in a fundraising competition to benefit the Foundation for Children with Cancer, was also privileged to the presentation and hands-on use of the da Vinci.

Peconic Bay Medical Center is one of the sponsors of the Westhampton Beach Robotics Club. The Club provides students the opportunity to work alongside professional engineers to design and test robots. Students work with corporate and community sponsors to compete in regional and championship competitions. The Club is no stranger to the ingenuity of the da Vinci Surgical System. At PBMC in November 2010 they were able to challenge their knowledgeable and inquisitive minds with hands-on use of the surgical system training model. In addition, the Club was also presented with a check for $2,000 by PBMC president & CEO, Andrew Mitchell and their mentor, Dr. Ortiz. Their experience led them to share their enthusiasm for the advanced technologies of the da Vinci surgical system with the entire student body of Westhampton Beach High School.

Robotic-assisted surgery and robotic healthcare is a progressing field that is influencing future technology. Dr. Ortiz summarized her presentation by leaving the students with three simple, yet challenging words of encouragement - "nothing is impossible."

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