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Richmond University Medical Center Physician First on Staten Island to Achieve Board Certification in Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology

August 13, 2020

Rita Shats, MD, FACOG, recently achieved board certification in pediatric and adolescent gynecology, making her the first obstetrics and gynecology (OB/GYN) physician on Staten Island to achieve this specialized certification from the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS). It is also the third board certification in the field of OB/GYN for Dr. Shats.

“Board certification in pediatric and adolescent gynecology recognizes a physician who possesses the appropriate skill set and understanding of common and complex health issues that are unique to both the pediatric and adolescent patient populations,” chair of RUMC’s OB/GYN department, Michael Cabbad, MD, said.

According to the ABMS, the board certification process was created over 100 years ago to provide a comprehensive evaluation of a physician specialist’s experience, knowledge and skills. The process ensures that physicians are meeting the highest standards set by their peers practicing in a medical specialty. Certification represents specialty-specific training beyond a physician’s medical licensure. It is a voluntary process that demonstrates a physician’s commitment to meeting a higher standard. In addition to graduating from medical school, board certified physicians have completed additional years of training at accredited programs and have passed examination by an ABMS member board.

The latest certification further positions Dr. Shats as a leading provider of gynecological services for young women’s reproductive and sexual health issues, including irregular or heavy menstruation cycles, delayed puberty, ovarian cysts, endometriosis, vaginal infections, and sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).

“Continuity of care is of the highest importance to me,” Dr. Shats said. “I was always taught as a medical student not to refer patients, but to take care for them by providing the most complete care possible. To be able to be there for my patients from birth, through adolescence, to adulthood and then retirement age means I can provide the most comprehensive care, in one office, allowing my patients to stay on Staten Island throughout their lives.”

Certification in pediatric and adolescent gynecology is the third ABMS certification for Dr. Shats. She is also board certified in obstetrics and gynecology as well as cosmetic gynecology. The latter reinforcing her skills in providing unique procedures such as vaginal rejuvenations; vaginoplasties, which is the construction or reconstruction of the vagina; labiaplasties, a surgical procedure to decrease the tissue size of the inner female genitalia; vaginal relaxations; and episiotomy revisions.

“As a physician it is important to always move ahead, to grow and to continue to develop as the healthcare around us changes,” Dr. Shats said. “The more knowledge and training I have, the more valuable and helpful I become for my current and future patients.”

For over a decade, Dr. Shats has been one of the leading physicians on Staten Island, having helped bring over 3,000 new lives into the world over the span of her career. In addition to her board certifications, she is also the first female physician at Richmond University Medical Center trained to perform robotic surgeries. Dr. Shats received her medical education at Ross University School of Medicine in Dominica, West Indies and graduated as a chief resident from the former St. Vincent’s Medical Center, now Richmond University Medical Center.

A fellow of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Dr. Shats is also RUMC’s associate director of gynecology, and director of the hospital’s family planning clinic. She also serves as assistant director of the OB/GYN residency program, and clerkship director for American University of Antigua and St. George University School of Medicine. She is also an associate professor at New York Medical College.

In addition to providing services at RUMC, Dr. Shats is also a partner at PBS OB/GYN Associates, which has offices in Staten Island, Brooklyn, and Manhattan. PBS OB/GYN Associates can be reached at 718-273-5500 and at