Hudson Valley Parent's 2008 Health Care Heroes

You picked ‘em! Meet your five favorite health care professionals

Hudson Valley Parent salutes our 2008 Health Care Heroes. We asked our readers to nominate professionals from the healthcare field who go above and beyond the ordinary call of duty. It is our pleasure to present these people and their special stories to you. Learn why local patients consider these doctors “Health Care Heroes”.

Lifewings, innovative safety training program
Northern Dutchess Hospital, Rhinebeck

Denise George,
President & CEO

“As part of its ongoing commitment to excellence, Northern Dutchess Hospital recently initiated an innovative new program called “Lifewings,” which is designed to streamline communication, optimize teamwork, and – most importantly – enhance patient safety. The doctors and front-line staff worked together to develop standardized patient report forms for documenting and sharing patient information, further reducing the margin for error. These proprietary tools are specific to Northern Dutchess Hospital. They are created by and for the entire team, with everyone involved and committed every step of the way.”


Richard Huntoon, DC
Advanced Alternative Medicine Center, Newburgh

“Dr. Huntoon’s Wellness Program is offered to local companies whose minimum wage employees can have access to advanced alternative healthcare. His program allows the working poor – who are typically toiling long hours to make ends meet – to obtain this healthcare to manage their health as a benefit of their employment.”
Nominated by Maryann Magyar, Newburgh

“I educate the best way I can. My door is always open to anyone who has health questions. If misunderstanding is what’s standing between you and better health, I can help.”
Richard Huntoon, DC


Julian Nelson, MD
Crystal Run Healthcare, Middletown

“Dr. Nelson has a nurturing approach and has shown such compassion when treating my daughter that my husband and I trust her recommendations completely. She listens to every worry I have and reassures me, rather than making me feel like I’m a ‘crazy’ parent.”
Nominated by Melanie Montenora, Montgomery

“Primary care is not a party. It’s a huge responsibility. But the rewards are seeing patients get better working with them, talking with them and making them feel better.”
Julian Nelson, MD

Daniel O’Hern, MD
Dunning Road Pediatrics, Middletown

“What could I say about the man who my children call Teletubbie Man! He was patient and stern in his beliefs and made sure we adhered to his instructions. He has a loving, tender heart, and thanks to him my baby’s asthma is well maintained.”
Nominated by E&R Rodriguez, Otisville

“The thing about pediatrics is you don’t go into it for the money. You do it because you love children. I’m a caretaker and an educator, and I enjoy seeing kids grow and thrive and do well in school.”
Daniel O’Hern, MD

Maria David, MD
Pediatric Care of the Hudson Valley, Newburgh

“When my son was hospitalized for a serious infection at 11 months of age, Dr. David supervised his care. I was able to remain calm and focused largely because of Dr. David’s calm and caring demeanor. I felt comforted knowing that she was available at all hours for a phone call.”
Nominated by Lisa Neer, Newburgh

“When you think of the most important thing in your life it’s not the house, not the car, not jewelry. It’s your kids. When people entrust your kids to you it’s such an honor.”
Maria David, MD

Who is your favorite health care professional? Nominate your pediatrician, ob/gyn, nurse or other health care professional for our 2009 Health Care Heroes award. Tell us why you think your doctor is the best in the Hudson Valley!