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Three Physicians and Friends Team up in a New Medical Practice in Robesonia

Similar goals and values, mutual admiration for one another and some fortuitous timing resulted in three friends and colleagues becoming partners in Penn State Health St. Joseph’s newest medical practice in Robesonia.

Physicians Meredith Gable, Robert Mandel, and Roland Newman began staffing the new family practice in May, and have been busy getting assimilated in the Western Berks community.

So far, they report, business is good. “We do everything from newborn to palliative and hospice care,” explained Dr. Mandel. “Patients have their choice of doctors, but then we will always pick up for each other if one of us isn’t available.”

The physicians met in 2013 when Dr. Gable, 29, and Dr. Mandel, 33, and were residents in St. Joseph’s Family Residency Program and Dr. Newman, 39, was a faculty member there. They got along well, enjoyed each other’s company and discovered that their philosophies regarding the field of medicine were closely aligned.

With graduation looming on the horizon for Dr. Gable and Dr. Mandel , they began thinking about their options. Knowing that Penn State Health St. Joseph was looking to expand its healthcare services to Western Berks, where it did not yet have a presence, the doctors decided to look into staffing it. They got Dr. Newman on board, and the three of them presented themselves as a team.

“I came to Dr. Newman and Meredith and asked what they thought about us coming together as a group,” said Dr. Mandel. “It seemed like the timing was good, and we all thought we’d be good partners.”

Leadership agreed, and the doctors got working to help design their new office space at 410 E. Penn Avenue in the former Giannotti’s Italian Kitchen, just across from Conrad Weiser High School.

EKG, lab services, physical therapy, and x-ray also are offered at the site. “We were able to contribute our ideas regarding the design and look of the space,” Dr. Gable said. “We wanted to make it a comfortable and functional place for our patients and staff.”

The doctors also were able to hire their staff and set the tone for the practice. “We want to offer high quality, comprehensive care in a family-oriented and collaborative atmosphere,” said Dr. Gable. The doctors work well together, discussing concepts and problems in shared office space.

“This room is our fish bowl of ideas,” said Dr. Mandel. “I can’t tell you how many times a day I turn around to bounce idea thought off of Dr. Gable or Dr. Newman. I think that’s a good way to work.”

The friends and partners are excited about their new venture and are already planning how they’ll expand the practice. Family practice is an important specialty, said Dr. Newman, and in the past residents of the western part of Berks County did not have much high quality family care readily available in their community.

Their practice is accepting new patients, and the doctors are looking to engage community members in becoming partners in their health care. Each of the doctors spends a half day each week at nearby Phoebe Berks Village and Health Care Center, and are looking to become increasingly involved in the community.

“We look forward to working with our patients and the Greater Western Berks area,” said Dr. Newman. “Quite honestly, family medicine is the backbone of the medical system, and all of us are very committed to it.”

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