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Michael Baba, DO: An Outstanding Doctor, a ‘Regular Guy’
March 07, 2016

Patients of Michael J. Baba, DO, know two things about him: He’s an outstanding doctor and he places a premium on the experience his patients have during their interactions and while in his care.

The former characteristic is the result of his strong dedication to his education, profession and patients. The latter comes—in part—from his family life.

Michael J. Baba, DO 

Michael J. Baba, DO

“As the son of immigrants” explains Dr. Baba, a physician with St. Luke's Family Practice-Wind Gap who earned his medical degree from the New York College of Osteopathic Medicine,  “I know that my parents worked hard to learn a new language and lifestyle. It is with great empathy that I have learned to be patient when discussing technical information with them."

That attention to relatable communication carries over into Dr. Baba’s work.

“I do that with all my patients, too,” notes Dr. Baba, a native of Long Island. “I want them to understand what I’m telling them, so I try to be a regular guy. I try to make them feel like I'm their next-door neighbor. The way I talk and dress tends to be less intimidating for patients and family members who can be wary of doctors.”

For example, Dr. Baba prefers a causal style when he’s in the office. He doesn’t often wear a tie or a white coat.

He also makes his care convenient through offerings such as St. Luke's Family Practice-Wind Gap’s online appointment scheduling. 

He also enjoys developing relationships with his patients and their family members across generations.

“I chose family medicine so that I can interact will all members of the family—children, parents, grandparents,” Dr. Baba says. “Because of this range, I get to make a variety of diagnoses and it is very interesting.”

As a child and teen, Dr. Baba wanted to follow in his father’s and uncle’s footsteps and become an auto mechanic. Fate, however, directed him to a career in medicine.

“Medicine is similar to auto mechanics in that I’m working on the body’s systems,” he explains. “Both need maintenance and, sometimes, fixing.”

Dr. Baba still counts auto mechanics as one of his hobbies.

“When I went to medical school, I started wearing gloves and people asked why I was doing that,” he recalls. “It was because my hands were dirty from working on cars. I learned to have my hands clean by Mondays.”

Dr. Baba describes his medical approach as one that stresses preventive medicine and gives the patient a voice in his or her care.

“I like to get patients in for regular physicals, give them the recommended preventive practices for their age groups and schedule basic blood work,” says Dr. Baba, who lives in Palmer Township with his wife and their goldendoodle. “I do what's needed, but I don’t overdo it. I don't push medications if I don't feel somebody needs medicine.

“I offer my recommendations, and give patients risks and benefits. My goal is to help my patients live long, healthy and productive lives.”

He says the greatest satisfaction he feels is when he helps his patients regain their health and their good quality of life. In one recent case, a patient had severe foot pain for several months. She had seen several specialists, but they didn’t come up with a definitive diagnosis that addressed her pain.

“I checked her foot and thought it might be gout,” Dr. Baba recalls. “It wasn’t a great picture of gout, so I could see how others missed it, but enough evidence was there.”

Within six hours of going on the medication Dr. Baba prescribed, the patient was walking pain-free without crutches.

“It was very satisfying to see her happy,” Dr. Baba says. “When my patients are happy, healthy and productive, that’s really when I feel that I’m doing my best.”

To find out more, visit Michael J. Baba, DO.

About St. Luke’s

Founded in 1872, St. Luke’s University Health Network (SLUHN) is a non-profit, regional, fully integrated and nationally recognized network providing services at seven hospitals and more than 270 outpatient sites. The network’s service area includes Lehigh, Northampton, Carbon, Schuylkill, Bucks, Montgomery, Berks and Monroe counties in Pennsylvania and in Warren County in New Jersey. Dedicated to advancing health education, St. Luke’s operates the nation’s oldest School of Nursing and 22 graduate medical educational programs and is considered a major teaching hospital, the only one in the region. In partnership with Temple University, St. Luke’s created the region’s first Medical School. Repeatedly, including 2016, St. Luke’s has earned Truven’s 100 Top Major Teaching Hospital designation as well as 50 Top Cardiovascular program in addition to other honors for clinical excellence. St. Luke’s is a multi-year recipient of the Most Wired award recognizing the breadth of St. Luke’s information technology applications such as electronic medical records, telehealth, online scheduling and pricing information. St. Luke’s is also recognized as one of the state’s lowest cost providers in comparison to major teaching hospitals and other health systems.