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All Hands on Deck

Addiction medicine physician eager to partner with UH primary care providers to combat opioid epidemic

UH Clinical Update - February 2018

Jeanette Moleski, DO, has seen the face of addiction. And, she says, it’s not what you think.

Jeanette Moleski, DO

“There’s a misconception that people with addiction are homeless people living under bridges,” says Dr. Moleski, who treats patients at UH Portage Family Health and Addiction Services in Streetsboro. “They’re not. They’re from every profession and every walk of life. They’re really good people. Once we get them in treatment, they return to a normal and healthy life.”

Dr. Moleski has been with UH for just two months, following a career in private practice in Hudson.

“I had no intention of ever leaving private practice,” she says. “However, when I discovered what UH had to offer to my patients and the fact that I could really grow an addiction program, it was a decision that I very happily made. As the program grows, there’s the ability to educate more physicians and to be more accessible to the community.”

For primary care providers who are interested, Dr. Moleski offers ample opportunity for learning more about addiction medicine. Providers can come to her practice in Streetsboro and shadow her for a half or full day. She’s also willing to travel to primary care provider offices to help them get oriented in how to treat dependency and addiction.

“I can make sure they have the right paperwork and are off to a good start,” she says. “I can also serve as a resource for doctors who are starting to treat addiction patients and have questions.”

Dr. Moleski earned her medical degree at Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine. Although she is board-certified in both family medicine and addiction medicine, her focus for the last eight years or so has been on patients with dependency and addiction.

“I very much enjoy helping this population of patients,” she says. “If more doctors really knew how great it was to treat addiction patients, we’d have a surplus of doctors treating them. You see people get better and stay better. You the transformation of their lives right before your eyes.”

Although each patient’s care path is unique, most of Dr. Moleski’s patients start treatment with two to three office visits a week, tapering down to weekly and eventually monthly once they are stable. This intensity leads to a personal connection that enhances the effects of the treatment.

“We know when they get a job, a promotion, become engaged, and even when they get a new dog,” she says. “They realize that we really care about them as individuals.”

Another key component of this doctor-patient relationship is careful listening.

“They all have a story about how they came to be where they are,” Dr. Moleski says. “It’s very important to listen to that story and really understand what they are telling you.”

“People with addiction and dependency need to be mended,” she adds. “If you mend anything, you need both a needle and a thread. The medication is the needle; the counseling and meetings are the thread. The two go together to help mend the patient back into good health.”


To contact Dr. Moleski about opportunities to learn more about addiction medicine, please call 330-422- 7725.