Top Docs: Dr. Andy Yoder

Doctors who serve an entire hospital labor long and dedicated hours, but work few dull moments.

Physician practicing general internal medicine at Aultman Hospital
Doctors who serve an entire hospital labor long and dedicated hours, but work few dull moments.

“We see a little bit of everything,” said Dr. Andy Yoder, a physician practicing general internal medicine—a hospitalist—at Aultman Hospital. “I start visiting patients at 7 a.m., and I’m at the hospital until 6 or 7 p.m. I work seven straight days and then have seven days off. You work a lot when you’re on duty, but you get to see your family,” said Yoder, who with his wife, Rita, has three children, a 3-year-old daughter, Nora, and 1 1/2-year-old twin sons, Max and Leo.

Heart failure, infections, internal bleeding and a multitude of other diseases and disorders are among hospital cases Yoder helps diagnose at Aultman.

“We see patients in the emergency room, and we continue to take care of those who get admitted to the hospital,” said Yoder. “We’re general medicine doctors, so we can take care of a lot of it on our own, but we consult with specialists. Let’s say a patient comes in after a heart attack. If he needs a heart cath (catheterization), we would consult with cardiology.”

Yoder completed both his medical education and his residency at The Ohio State University College of Medicine. He and his wife both grew up in Sugarcreek, and his path to medical school was winding, including growing up Amish and initially completing only an eighth-grade education, then leaving the Amish faith to travel.

“After leaving, I went to Costa Rica for two weeks on a mission trip, then signed up for three years,” Yoder recalled. “When I was there, I worked with medical mission teams—this would have been 2000—and that’s what got me thinking about a career in medicine.”

Yoder earned his GED, then went to Goshen College in Indiana. After medical school, he brought his life experiences—along with his ability to speak both Spanish and Pennsylvania Dutch—with him to Aultman.

“I can relate better to some patients; I have something in common with them, especially the Amish and Mennonite. They enjoy it when I can speak Pennsylvania Dutch with them,” said Yoder. “And whenever I have Spanish-speaking patients, I don’t need a translator.”

Yoder said his commitment to being a hospitalist is a long-term one—a love.

“I’ve been very thankful to be a part of Aultman Hospital. It’s a great hospital for both patients and the medical staff,” said Yoder. “I like being in a hospital, rather than a clinical setting. I love the critical thinking aspect of it. And I enjoy the variety of general medicine. We get to work with different people, with different medical problems—some of those problems being complicated—and make the patients feel better.”