Originally, Bronx, NY, native, Dr. Patrick Dorvilus was drawn to Orthopedics as a medical specialty. Accepted into an accelerated program for students based on academic achievements, examination, and extra-curricular activities, he went from high school graduation to M.D. in seven years based on the recommendation of his high school chemistry teacher. In addition to medical school, Dr. Dorvilus nurtured an artistic side. He developed a comic strip while in college titled, “Beyond Words,” and spent his free time creatively painting scenes of the Caribbean and its people, a hobby he still enjoys.
After entering medical school, he decided not to pursue Orthopedics and became more interested in a career path with the opportunity to talk to patients and help them figure out what was wrong. He liked being a “detective” and the problem solving aspects presented by a specialty in Gastroenterology.
Dr. Dorvilus completed his medical education at New York University, an internship at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center, and his residency at Yale University. He also completed a fellowship in Gastroenterology at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. It was while on the clinical faculty of the University of Connecticut at Hartford, where he held a faculty position teaching future gastroenterologists, that he heard of Statesboro.
“I noticed that students would move to the South because of a lesser concentration of doctors, especially in rural areas,” he said.
He had calls from associates in Atlanta affiliated with Emory, but while Dr. Dorvilus enjoyed the pace of big city life, he wanted to live close to his practice, and to avoid the traffic and congestion of a large metropolitan area. He heard about opportunities in Statesboro and visited twice at the urging of EGRMC Administrator Bob Bigley.
“I liked Statesboro’s proximity to Savannah, which, coincidentally, is a sister city of Saint-Martin where my parents were born. I had been there to visit family, and I enjoyed the historical ties to my own culture,” he said.
Right after Dr. Dorvilus arrived in Statesboro, he related, “I went to an antique shop and saw a coin minted in Haiti to commemorate soldiers sent to Savannah. I felt like it was karma.”
He’s been here for four years and has recently opened a new practice location – Access Gastroenterology – at the corner of Zetterower and Savannah Avenues. When asked why he chose downtown, Dr. Dorvilus said, “I like to be close to a diverse business population. I enjoy being around the action and the atmosphere. It lends itself to a more interesting practice scenario. I can grab a coffee next door, or watch a show on the way home, plus it supports downtown development.”
Dr. Dorvilus’ philosophy in practicing medicine centers on patient care. “I believe in treating others as if they were members of my own family,” he stated. “I am very compulsive about looking everywhere to make sure nothing is missed.”
“I also believe that everyone is an important individual. I think it is only ethical to treat everyone with dignity and respect,” he said.
The most challenging aspect for Dr. Dorvilus is “bringing what I have learned at the University level here. I have no students or fellows to teach; no research level as in a large medical community. That challenges me to bring it here.”
One of the ways he is bringing it here is by working with SCAD students and Georgia Southern engineering students on a synergy of engineering and the arts. “The call to advance is the only way to not remain stagnant,” he shared. “I must feed my creative side, too.” In addition, Dr. Dorvilus has been awarded a clinical assistant professorship at the Medical College of Georgia, where he will be instructing medical students.
“Seeing the fruits of my labor ripen and come to fruition is very rewarding,” he said. But, the greatest reward is “being accepted and respected by my peers and colleagues. I see that by referrals and by patients talking about me. By the fact that I’m doing well here.”