13:55 PM

Practice Makes Perfect, in Hazleton

LVPG-Hazleton’s Jodi Lenko, MD, can’t imagine calling anyplace else “home”

Practicing medicine in Hazleton was not always the plan, but it’s certainly turning out to be perfect for Jodi Lenko, MD, Lehigh Valley Physician Group (LVPG) Assistant Medical Director for the Department of Medicine in Hazleton. Born and raised in Hazleton, Lenko studied at Temple University School of Medicine and the University of Pennsylvania, both in Philadelphia, before coming back home to practice internal medicine alongside her father, Michael Washinsky, DO, who’s been practicing in Hazleton since 1977.

“I always knew I wanted a medical career, but wasn’t always sure that career would be here,” Lenko says. But after her father-in-law was diagnosed with cancer, Lenko and her husband (also from northeastern Pennsylvania) knew they wanted to return to the area and settle down near family.

No place like home

Since returning seven years ago, Lenko continues to work alongside her father on a daily basis, and can’t imagine calling anyplace else “home.”

“Hazleton is a close-knit community,” she says. “My patients know me and they know my name, whether it’s from high school or through mutual friends, and having that name recognition and trust is incredible. I’m truly grateful for it.”

A community of relationships

Practicing in a smaller area like Hazleton, Lenko also knows that she can have a greater impact on patients over a longer period of time.

“I get to build ongoing patient relationships,” she says, “and those relationships aren’t confined to the office. I run into patients around town all the time and our interaction outside the office brings the relationship closer when we are together for appointments.”

However, the icing on the cake for her is the combination of small community care and network resources that resides at Lehigh Valley Hospital–Hazleton.

“We will always serve our local community,” Lenko says, “and the benefits and resources that come with being part of the Lehigh Valley Health Network are immeasurable both to patients and to me too.”