A good doctor, preferably female?

Thumbnail image for stethoscope and ophthalmoscopeJen asks via email:

I'm a fairly new transplant to the Albany area and am looking for a primary care doctor. Can your readers recommend a smart, compassionate, preferably female doctor in the Albany or Troy area?

We've had a similar question before, but it came up more than 2.5 years ago. Things change. And Jen's preference narrows the field a bit. (Also: we heard from Jen that she called a few of the doctors from that old post and they weren't taking new patients.)

So, have a suggestion for Jen? Please share! And, as always, bonus points for explaining why you like that doctor.

photo: Flickr user a.drian (cc)


Keith Rebehn, MD is fantastic. Obviously not female but he's very professional, competent and kind. I'm healthy but have been comfortable talking to him about anything from poison ivy to hemorrhoids.

His Health-grades and Vitals web ratings are also very respectable.

He's been my general physician for 7 years.

I go to Dr. Durdana Mehtabdin of Guilderland Family Practice. I love her. She always answers my questions and calls me back quickly when I call her office with a question. The few times I've needed to see her right away, she has been able to fit me in.

When making a diagnosis or prescribing medication, she explains her thought process as to why she thinks one diagnosis or prescription is better than another for my situation.

Her office is low- tech. She uses a bathroom scale and the restroom is actually outside of the office proper. Her manner and willingness to make the patient part of his/ her care are invaluable, and help me overlook the low- tech stuff.

Dr. Rachelle Brilliant of Partners in Family Medicine in Troy is absolutely wonderful. I have a few different chronic health issues and have moved around a lot and thus been to quite a few different primary care providers; she is the doctor I always wished for. I've seen her for two years now and I hope to never change doctors again.

little farther than you want, but dr. jill gradner in saratoga is fantastic. i'm a self-diagnosed hypochondriac and she always takes my ridic concerns professionally and walks me through the steps (on either why i don't have what i think i have or on ways in which to determine whether or not i have whatever the eff it is at that point in time). also, she's great about understanding that i can't afford every single prescription she would like to give me and often gives me the freebie samples so i'm all stocked up. she's also clearly well read in the medical field and will often cite recent articles when discussing whether or not a procedure or plan is appropriate for me.

also, if you're comfortable with having an ob-gyn be your primary, i highly highly recommend dr. mondragon in clifton park. her entire staff is just excellent (nurses, receptionist, NP, all of them). they have extended hours (i once went for an appointment at 7 am..) and dr. mondragon is also considerate, kind and takes seriously all of your concerns. she is also the go-to doc for trans men who need to get that appointment in order to go through with gender confirmation surgery - i greatly admire her for this.

I'm also looking for a new (preferably female) primary care physician. How do these docs do with women's health issues? My previous md told me to "stop worrying" about what wound up being some pretty serious health issues that impacted my ability to have a child. I'm looking for an understanding primary who can also act as support for the tough fertility treatments I'm going through now.

I had a good experience at http://www.communitycare.com/default.asp . They were recommended to me and they have offices in Albany.

I recommend Gerri Aitken in Slingerlands. I am also relatively new to the area and went through this same search. I have been very happy so far.

Dr. Judith Bodnar is my primary care physician. She's over on Atrium Drive off of Everett Road in the Prime Care complex. While she's decidedly brusque in her presentation, she has a no BS attitude that I really appreciate, and her staff is very pleasant. She's extremely thorough, asks many questions (and actually listens to your responses), and isn't a needless pill peddler. If you are truly ill, you can simply call the office or show up bright and early and she'll take you over regular appointments. She does, however, have a penchant for blood work.

Albany Family Practice Group in Delmar, Krisemily Mccormick. Nice new facilty, sweet young doctor.

Joanne Van Woert. She has a practice with her sister and another female doctor in Slingerlands. They're fantastic. Very warm home-like feel to the office.


In Averill Park - just east of Troy - I can recommend Dr Lisa Thorn

Mary Grace Jacon, FNP--Seton Health East Greenbush. She listens she doesn't cut you off and she takes her time.

This is in Clifton Park, but I would recommend Dr. Steffani Cotugno to anyone seeking a Primary Care Physician:


I second Community Care.. they have a number of Family Practice sites.. I recommend Ann Rutter at the site on Clara Barton Drive.. but almost all sites of female docs, about whom I've heard good things.

I second Mary Grace Jacon at Seton Health. I've been with her for years. She is very compassionate and understanding of your situation. She won't make you jump through hoops or do a lot of unnecessary tests like some doctor's will.

I'll second the recommendation for Geri Aitken of Slingerlands Family Medicine. I've been seeing her since Dr. Reider retired from that practice. She's thoughtful, kind, open-minded and takes her time with each patient. In the past I had some issues with the coordination of their office procedures but they seem to have things down well now after settling in at their new location.

She can handle your annual well-woman examinations and makes the entire process very comfortable. If ever you have an abnormal pap or something like that, she'll refer you to a specialist.

Dr. Gloria Guptill at Community Care Physicians (same group recommended by Lauren and Julie, above) in Delmar

She's young, very compassionate and made me very comfortable. I hadn't gone to a PCP in ... 6+ years? ... prior to seeing her b/c my health insurance doesn't require a referral for specialists. It was a good experience, but I didn't go in for anything specific, just a check up.

I know you've had a lot of responses already, but I'd like to recommend Dr Denise Letteriello. She's the only doctor I've ever been to that hardly ever makes me wait, patiently listens to me, asks me questions, doesn't make me feel rushed out of the office. She was recommended to me when I moved here 5 years ago and I've been enjoying the choice ever since!

RE: Dr. Steffani Cotugno - she's my wife's doctor, and while my wife actually likes her, she rarely gets to see her. Usually gets stuck with a PA. It frustrates the hell out of me that she can't get in to see her actual doctor.

Dr. Maryann Colalillo (Upstate Ob-Gyn Association,
1365 Washington Ave.) is a terrific ob/gyn. She schedules in office time to talk to you in addition to the physical exam and has a holistic approach (inc. nutrition and exercise).

Last year I started seeing Kristin Campagna at Latham Medical Group and so far I really like her. She's young and female, she listens and is flexible. Also, the office is centrally located, so it's easy to get to no matter where in the Capital Region you live. They're good about taking your phone calls and calling you back, and getting you in for an appointment ASAP if you need it.

Thank you all so much for the recommendations!

Dr. Gloria Guptill in Delmar is amazing, compassionate, through, and has a great bedside manner.

Hedy Migden would have been a perfect PCP for you. Hopefully her practice returns

Glad to see this post resurrected for the note about Dr. Migden. There's been a very serious breach in patient care in the way Dr. Migden was 'terminated' from St. Peter's. Google her name for several stories in the local news about this, but suffice to say St. Peter's and their parent Trinity Health have (ironically) stabbed the Capital District in the back and robbed us of a treasured Physician. Many, many people hope she returns as a doctor somehow.
And apologies to AoA for the post hijack but I feel strongly this is a story that needs to be told.

SPHP fired the most competent and caring Primary Care Physician in the Capital District Hedy Migden, MD,leaving thousands of patients abandoned. No provisions were made for a replacement physician.

Have to echo the comments about Hedy Migden, MD, who was fired by St. Peter's Health Partners for a fictitious reason. She's a wonderful physician, and I think she's joining a non-SPHP-affiliated practice in January. Now I avoid any St. Peter's-affiliated office whenever possible. One exception I made this year was for my annual mammogram, because they have all prior records for comparison.

My entire family of seven misses Dr. Hedy terribly.... I can't say enough how much we love her.

My entire family of seven misses Dr. Hedy terribly.... I can't say enough how much we love her.

Dr. Hedy Migden is seeing patients again at Oldendorf Medical Services in Albany.

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