Published on March 26th, 2014
Robert Dolansky, DO to Lead Osteopathic Physicians Throughout the State
Like many St. Luke’s physicians, Robert Dolansky Jr., DO, will be donning his tuxedo on May 2nd for a festive black-tie event. But unlike his colleagues who will be attending the St. Luke’s Ball at the Saucon Valley Country Club, Robert, his lovely wife Lori and their boys, Noah and Jacob, will be traveling to the Valley Forge Convention Center, where he will be sworn in as President of the Pennsylvania Osteopathic Medical Association (POMA) – a statewide organization for physicians holding the Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) degree.
During his one-year presidency term, Robert will represent more than 5,000 osteopathic physicians and 2,000 students throughout the state. He will lead the development of POMA’s positions on pending medical-related legislation, speak at state legislature committee meetings, visit Pennsylvania’s two osteopathic medical schools and encourage physicians to reach out to elected officials about state and national legislative issues.
Robert is obviously well known by other Osteopathic physicians active in POMA, but his influence at St. Luke’s extends well beyond those circles. He serves as director of osteopathic medical education of St. Luke’s University Health Network, director of medical education at St. Luke’s Hospital – Allentown Campus, medical director of St. Luke’s walk-in care centers, including St. Luke’s CareNow in Wind Gap and St. Luke’s QuickCare in Allentown. He is also co-director of St. Luke’s Family Health Center in Allentown.
In addition to his administrative duties, Dr. Dolansky still sees patients at St. Luke’s QuickCare and the Health Center. He has worked at the Health Center since arriving at St. Luke’s Hospital – Allentown Campus as a resident 18 years ago.
Robert’s residency advisor Joseph Stella, DO, first sparked his interest in POMA. An emergency room physician and medical director of the Osteopathic Family Medicine Program and emergency medicine at St. Luke’s Allentown Hospital Campus, Dr. Stella served as president on both state and national levels.
“Dr. Stella was such an energetic guy,” says Robert of his teacher, who died at age 92 in 2010. “He was everyone’s mentor, always interested in helping young physicians become better doctors. He was very personable and had extensive connections. He was a very inspiring person.”
Robert completed an internship and family practice residency at Allentown Osteopathic Medical Center, now St. Luke’s Hospital – Allentown Campus. Much has changed since his residency days.
“Back then the hospital was two mansions joined by a central wing,” he says. “Watching the hospital grow and thrive over the years since St. Luke’s acquired it has been amazing.”
A native of Cambria County, Robert became familiar with the Lehigh Valley through his Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine roommate from Bath. “It was a lot easier to come to the Lehigh Valley for family time and home-made meals,” he says. “I liked the area so I decided this was where I wanted to do my training.”
He has never regretted that decision and enjoys the variety that his many roles at St. Luke’s provide. “My favorite part of my job is sharing my experiences at St. Luke’s through the years with the new residents,” he says. “It’s great to see their ambition when they first come out of medical school and to help nurture their enthusiasm for patient care. It’s rewarding to see them grow and mature as physicians.”
Similarly, Robert enjoys the relationships he has with his patients at the Family Health Center. “Having worked at the clinic for 18 years, I have been able to play a role in helping children grow up in a healthier environment,” he said. “With many of my patients, we have developed a mutual trust and respect.”
A fellow of the American College of Osteopathic Family Physicians (ACOFP), Robert says he has always been goal-driven and has always aspired to a leadership position in a medical organization. He also serves as a delegate to the American Osteopathic Association and the ACOFP.
More Interesting Tidbits about Robert Dolansky, Jr., DO:
- Robert played the snare and base drum in Penn State’s Blue Band and was even the back-up drum major. To land that coveted position, the drum major must be able to perform a flip. Although he had mastered the stunt, sadly Robert never had the chance to perform the flip in front of Beaver Stadium’s crowds of 100,000+ spectators.
- A bibliophile, Robert minored in English literature at Penn State. (He majored in biology.) Today, he reads all types of literature and carries an Ipad with him so he can read whenever he can.
- With the encouragement of St. Luke’s Allentown President Frank Ford, Robert completed the Lehigh Valley Marathon in December 2010. He says it was his first and last marathon, hasn’t run more than three miles since, and that he in fact he “never cares to run long distance again.”
- Robert is a “huge Harry Potter” fan, an interest he has enjoyed sharing with his two sons. He’s read the book series several times and seen every movie. He wanted to name his dog Potter, but was overruled.
- The Dolanskys are a “real St. Luke’s family.” Robert’s wife Lori works at St. Luke’s Allentown campus, where she was born when it was still Allentown Osteopathic Hospital. The couple’s two sons, Noah and Jacob, were also born at St. Luke’s Allentown Hospital.