Choosing a Physician in 2013; Plus, Fairs and Festivals and New Ice Cream Parlors (Editor’s Letter)

A word from Hudson Valley Editor in Chief, Olivia J. Abel

So how do you choose a physician? Whether you’re searching for an obstetrician, a dermatologist, an orthopedic surgeon, or you simply need an internist or general practitioner for routine care and maintenance, there are several factors to consider. First, they should have solid educational credentials and should be able to prove that they are keeping up to date with the rapid advancements in their field. Next, your doctor should be affiliated with a top-notch hospital. Next up is the convenience factor — a highly regarded Ivy League physician does you no good if you can’t easily get to the office or schedule an appointment. But the most important issue, at least to me, is bedside manner. I need a doctor that I can speak with freely; I need to feel comfortable sharing all of my medical concerns. In short, someone who I can rely on and trust.

Our annual Top Doctors cover story is an ideal place to begin your search. The 164 physicians who made this year’s list received glowing accolades from the people who matter most — their peers. Yes, their follow doctors and hospital administrators, who work with them day-in and day-out, find these medical professionals to be the cream of the crop. So keep this list handy when you are searching for another physician. Many of our readers tell us that, despite the fact they can easily hop on the Internet to look up a doctor, they keep this issue in a safe place all year long.

Along with this list, we also outline several amazing medical breakthroughs that you should know about. The incidence of skin cancer continues to increase rapidly. In fact, one in five Americans will now develop skin cancer in their lifetime. I have had skin cancer surgery twice. The first time I was in my early 20s; the second was several years ago. This lesion was smack-dab in the middle of my nose and required specialized Mohs surgery. My wonderful physician, Dr. Samuel Book of Orange County — selected from this list — did such a stellar job that you can’t see even the remnant of a scar. Recently, there are new, cutting-edge ways to diagnose melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer. Other breakthroughs we cover include new drugs for diabetes, novel ways of dealing with concussions and hypertension, and the introduction of the 3-D mammogram.

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Also in this issue, you’ll find our annual roundup of the fairs and festivals that make summertime so much fun. From old favorites like the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival at Boscobel (I’m dying to see their version of All’s Well That Ends Well this year) to the brand-new Taste of Country Music Festival at Hunter Mountain (with big names like Lady Antebellum), it seems there is more to see and do each year. So grab a red pen, read through the article (which starts here) — and get your tickets fast. Me? I’m going to try to hit every one of the county fairs this summer. Pig races, petting zoos, and some fair food seem like good bets for my toddler, who will be in tow.

And finally, we fill you in on some new ice cream parlors in the region. It’s a hard job, but somebody has to do it, so we hit the road to sample our fair share of tasty treats. And whether you long for a soft-serve cone at a retro-style stand or an organic, homemade scoop, there is something cool for everyone.

Happy Summer.

Olivia J. Abel
Editor In Chief

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