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Fleeing Hungary with their 4-month-old daughter and 18-month-old son in their arms, Los Alamos pediatrician Tom Csanadi’s parents escaped the 1956 historic uprising and made their way to the United States.
An estimated 30,000 people died in that spontaneous nationwide revolt against the government of the People’s Republic of Hungary and its Soviet-imposed policies.
Csanadi and another brother were born in the U.S. within a couple of years of his parents’ arrival.
“My mom wrote a book about how she and my father escaped Hungary,” Csanadi said. “Dad died about four years ago and my mom, sister and brothers all live in San Diego. My dad was an incredible artist and my sister and one of my brothers has his talent and work as graphic artists. My other brother works for the U.S. Navy.”
Csanadi, 50, has been a pediatrician in New Mexico for nearly 18 years, the first five of which were spent in Gallup at the Indian Health Service.
“Our son Alex was born in Gallup and we wanted to raise him in a more rounded environment,” he said.
A friend told Csanadi about Los Alamos. He discovered an opening at the local children’s clinic, applied and has been practicing there for the last 12 and a half years.
Csanadi has reached a place in which he wants to alter the style that he practices medicine. He explained that he has found the intense scheduling of the 10-minute appointment strategy professionally unsatisfying.
“I want to spend more time with patients and provide more of a mobile practice, making house calls – like an old-fashioned country doctor, but with a twist, with my iPad and a travel bag of technically savvy compact
medical equipment that I can take to see patients at their homes,” Csanadi said. “I’d like to think this is the way forward. Financially, there’s no reasonable way to make it work but I’m at a point in my life where it’s more important to have a satisfying type of practice that can stand as a model. I think patient satisfaction will be higher as well.”
His focus now is on creating educational opportunities for his patients’ families by telephone conversations at 662-9200 and e-mail access through www.drtomchildhealth.com.
And access to an online program produced by the American Academy of Pediatrics with “evidence-based information integrated with decades of focus on child-health concerns,” through a resource room at his office.
Along with general pediatrics, well baby and well child checks, immunizations and student sports medicine, Csanadi said he is eager to tackle more challenging issues such as Attention Deficit Disorder, childhood obesity and asthma.
Csanadi lives in Los Alamos. His son Alex Csanadi, now 13, attends Los Alamos Middle School. Csanadi has two dogs, Hank, 14, a Chihuahua and Jack Russell Terrier mix that he inherited and Penny, 4, a heeler mix that he adopted from the Los Alamos Animal Shelter two years ago.
Csanadi is known as Dr. Tom by his patients and their parents, he said, because his last name is difficult to pronounce.
His new practice, Dr. Tom, Child and Adolescent Medicine, opens at 8:30 a.m. Monday in the new Medical Office Building at Los Alamos Medical Center within the space of the Los Alamos Women’s Health Services.