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Parents Influence Dr. Violago's Profession
By Lois Thomson

Never underestimate the influence parents can have on their children, and where that influence can eventually lead. In Dr. Martin Violago's case, his parents' influence led him to a career in medicine, and led him on a journey from the Philippines to the Canonsburg Community Healthcare Center. As Dr. Violago recalls, "The way I got interested in family medicine is that my father is a physician back in the Philippines, a general practitioner, like family medicine. And that inspired me to become a doctor and study family medicine. And my mother is a doctor as well, an obstetrician, so both of them inspired me to take up medicine."

Additionally, not just Dr. Violago, but his sisters and brother, too, were influenced to go into the profession. "My sister is also a family medicine physician. I'm the eldest and then my brother is also a physician—he's going into internal medicine here, he'll be starting in July. And our youngest sister is a nurse. So I guess we were all inspired."

Dr. Violago talked specifically about what made such an impression on him about his father's practice: "It was the way my father saw the patients, how he was loved by them. Patients would come from far places to see him and they would wait—back home, you just have to wait for your turn, so they would wait for hours. And I know they liked his service because they would bring him goods. He has a very good rapport with his patients and that led me to want to study medicine."

So study medicine he did, attending the University of Santo Tomas in the Philippines. Dr. Violago then followed up by doing his residency at UPMC McKeesport, where his wife, who is also from the Philippines, is doing her residency as well, in internal medicine.

Because of their presence in Western Pennsylvania, Dr. Violago was looking for a job in this area, and learned about the position at Canonsburg Community Healthcare Center through a friend of his. He joined in February and works as a partner with Dr. Christopher Rhody.

Like his father, Dr. Violago handles family medicine, and he sees patients of all ages, "from newborn to geriatric groups." As for the practice itself, he said, "I like seeing patients. I like the continuity of care, so I deal with the patient holistically. I see all the main aspects of their problems. I deal with the psycho-social, so not just the medical aspect, but overall. For example, if they have problems with hypertension or if they have depression, I deal as well with those kind of issues."

As Dr. Violago establishes his practice, his patients no doubt will be as pleased with his work as they are with his father's in the Philippines.

To make an appointment with Dr. Martin Violago or Dr. Christopher Rhody at the Canonsburg Community Healthcare Center on 36 East Pike Street, call (724) 745-9181. Same day scheduling is available.

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