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Affinity for Handiwork Leads to Career in Surgery

Surgeon Jennifer Serfin, MD, has always loved using her hands. That’s why, when she followed her dad into medicine, she gravitated toward surgery.

“I’ve always had hobbies that involved my hands and having dexterity,” said Dr. Serfin, who serves as trauma medical director and Intensive Care Unit co-director for Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center. She is also a member of the Samaritan Medical Group Leadership Council, the Credentials Committee and the Peer Review Committee.

When she was in high school, she played the flute and piccolo. Today, away from the hospital, she loves to knit and crochet.

She was interested in medicine as a child, watching her father, who was an internist. Her dexterity led her to become a surgeon, and she joined Samaritan following her residency and fellowship.

“Surgery allows me to use both my brain and my hands,” Dr. Serfin said. “I love that I can help patients get through life-altering events and see how they are able to get back to their normal lives. We have successes and failures, but everything is a lesson and this job allows me to learn something new every day.”

Her favorite surgery is gallbladder removal because it leads to a quick, positive outcome.

“The patient feels so much better after it’s done,” she said. “The patient gets back to normal activity and work, and some even say that they’ve had symptoms for years, but never knew it was from their gallbladder.”

Another passion for her is teaching. She is the director for the Samaritan’s General Surgery Residency

Program, and she is currently pursuing a master’s degree in education from Johns Hopkins University.

“Students and residents are our future physicians and surgeons, and I enjoy being a part of that educational process,” Dr. Serfin said.

Away from the hospital, Dr. Serfin is well known not just for her knitting and crocheting, but for the “Great Wall of Yarn” in her craft room.

“It gives me a creative outlet, and I love making things for other people,” she said, adding that she has knit a variety of items for friends and family.

A native of New Jersey, Dr. Serfin and her husband chose Samaritan and the Northwest after vacationing in the region several times.

“We absolutely loved the area, and we promised each other that we would live in this region at some point in our lives,” she said. “When I started searching for jobs, Samaritan had everything I was looking for and it just so happened to be in the Pacific Northwest.”

Find a Health Care Provider Opportunity with Samaritan

Samaritan Health Services has five hospitals and more than 80 primary and specialty care clinics throughout the mid-Willamette Valley and central Oregon Coast, providing a wide variety of physician employment opportunities.