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Scientific Research in the Age of COVID-19

This Thursday, April 15 from 6-7 PM CST join members of JETAA Chicago - JET Program Alumni of Illinois, Wisconsin & Indiana and the Japan America Society of Chicago (JASC) for a discussion on scientific research in the age of COVID. Suzanne Finucane, Operations Manager of the Center for Bionic Medicine at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab, will provide attendees with an inside look into rehabilitation robotics research and how her team has adapted protocol to safely perform studies during the pandemic. She’ll also describe some exciting connections with Japan!

About the Presentation

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve, workplaces have the daunting task of responding and adapting to the situation as best they can while following federal and state guidelines. In this interactive webinar, Suzanne Finucane, MS, CCRC, PTA of the Regenstein Foundation Center for Bionic Medicine (CBM) at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab will provide an inside look into the evolving world of robotics research at a leading rehabilitation hospital. She will discuss how her group has adapted their research methods in the wake of COVID-19 and also touch on some international research collaborations with Japan led by some of her colleagues. Suzanne’s presentation will be followed by an opportunity for audience Q&A.

About the Speaker

Suzanne Finucane, MS, CRC, PTA currently serves as Operations Manager of the Regenstein Foundation Center for Bionic Medicine (CBM) at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab, where she oversees operational and financial support for one of the largest translational academic research centers of its kind with more than 60 innovators and staff members. In addition, she is a certified clinical research coordinator and physical therapy assistant, providing research staff with support for research studies focused on improving clinical care and technology for people with upper and lower limb loss.

When COVID-19 became a reality in early 2020, Suzanne helped lead CBM into ways to safely transition scientific research and update staff protocol. As the pandemic continues to rapidly evolve, Suzanne attends weekly huddles with hospital leadership to keep abreast to the latest news and guidelines.

With new safety guidelines in place, researchers within CBM continue to maintain a diverse research portfolio focused on designing and evaluating technologies to improve the quality of life and health of individuals with disabilities. Some recent research activities led by CBM include evaluating the potential of a wearable sensor to track and monitor symptoms of COVID-19, as well as some longstanding international collaborations focused on rehabilitation robotics, including one with Honda in Japan.

Suzanne received a Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training from Butler University, certification in Physical Therapy Assistant training from the University of Indianapolis and a Master of Science in Medical Informatics from Northwestern University. She is a member of the American Academy of Orthotists and Prosthetists and American Physical Therapy Association, among other organizations.

Pictured: Center for Bionic Medicine researchers at work (please note: photo was taken pre-pandemic)

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