Monday, June 3, 2019

When Dr. Doug Martzluf and his wife, Laura, were searching for a place to start his practice nearly 40 years ago, they looked for a place to raise their family as a top priority. They searched for a community where volunteerism and faith were important to the people-- somewhere close to a large city, higher education, arts and culture.  They found all those things in Chambersburg.

“We were welcomed to the community with open arms.”

Almost four decades later, Dr. Martzluf is still enchanted by the community where he practiced medicine and raised four children with his wife.

“The nurturing of people to our kids in this community has been tremendous.  Wherever the girls went, be it at school, church, or in participation in the arts, they were accepted right away. Family means a lot in Franklin County and I still see that.”

It is that same community where his patients instilled their trust in him as a doctor – an experience he’s grateful to his patients for giving him.

“I want to say thank you to everyone for their trust. Having the trust of patients is an amazing privilege. It is a privilege to hear patient’s private concerns and with that privilege comes a lot of responsibility.”

Through his career, Dr. Martzluf said he learned something from his patients every single day. The experience ranged from some of the more difficult moments he experienced in obstetrics, to the more comical chats with patients in office visits.  Joy, he said, needs to be a part of care whenever possible.

He reflected on his 39 years of practice and advised new doctors to listen as much as possible.

“Listen, listen, listen and observe what the patient has to offer in their story.  Try to see things from the patient’s perspective and don’t jump to conclusions. After listening, observe and examine completely keeping in mind what you were taught in your training.  Then use every tool you can because every patient deserves every chance at healing.”

Now, in retirement, Dr. Martzluf plans on spending as much time as possible with his family including six grandchildren. That includes a trip to Africa, where one of his daughters is working as a missionary. 

He also plans to spend as much time outside, without a schedule.

“I would like to have the opportunity to take my time doing things. Since I was 18, most of my daily living has been scheduled and indoors and I greatly miss the outdoors.”