Dr. Kevin Patel has decided to return home to Moore County to open his dental practice called Dogwood Family Dental.
Dr. Patel was born at Moore Regional Hospital in Pinehurst and grew up in the Carthage/Whispering Pines area.
After he graduated from Union Pines, he attended NC State with the hope of becoming a veterinarian. This dream was inspired by Dr. Patel’s childhood mentor, Dr. Tim Boyte – a veterinarian in Carthage.
“I’ve known him since I was a kid,” Dr. Patel said. “He’s why I wanted to be a vet.”
However, halfway into his degree, Dr. Patel realized he did not like working with larger animals.
He began working weekends at Moore Regional hospital when cardiologist Dr. David Cowherd asked what his end goal was.
When Dr. Patel said he was still figuring it out, Dr. Cowherd suggested that he explore dentistry. He then began volunteering at a dentist’s office in Raleigh.
“I liked working with my hands and having one-on-one time with the patients,” he said. “It went on from there.”
He continued on to East Carolina University to receive his Doctorate in Dental Medicine and has since completed a residency at the Martinsburg, WV VA Hospital in advanced general dentistry.
It has always been a dream of Dr. Patel’s to come back to Moore County and open a practice in his hometown. On March 1st, he was able to see his dream come to fruition as he purchased Dogwood Dental from Dr. Christine Gatti in Aberdeen. Dr. Gatti will be retiring after more than twenty years of working with patients at that location.
“I want to express how humbled and appreciative I am for Dr. Gatti trusting me with the care of her long-time patients,” Dr. Patel said. “It has allowed me to fulfill my dream of being a dentist in my hometown. I am appreciative for the skilled staff that she has allowed me to work with and make this transition so much easier.”
Dr. Patel and his wife, whom he married April 7th of this year, are both working together to remodel the fifty-eight year old building as well. They hope to create a soothing modernized environment for patients.
The renovations are planned to be complete by July 1st – the same time when Dr. Patel will step into the office full-time. Until then, Dr. Gatti is continuing her care of patients as Dr. Patel begins transitioning into the practice by working on Wednesdays.
“I loved working for Dr. Gatti,” said dental hygienist Sandra Bumgarner. “I’ve learned so much from her.”
Bumgarner has lived in Seven Lakes North for eighteen years and recently celebrated her fifteenth year working at Dogwood Dental.
While Bumgarner will miss Dr. Gatti in the office, she is excited to have Dr. Patel step in.
“I really do like the Patels. They have made the transition so wonderful! It’s like they’ve been working there for years,” Bumgarner said.
Bumgarner will be celebrating her thirtieth year as a hygienist on July 11th, and she knows a good dentist when she sees one.
“He’s so down to earth,” she said. “He doesn’t overwhelm the patient; the patients enjoy him. It’s just so easy-going. I’m excited to see what happens. They’ve already made some really good changes to the office with remodeling.”
Dr. Patel hopes to be more than just a dentist in the community. He wants to mentor others just as Dr. Boyte mentored him.
“I want to be successful and help others reach their goals,” he said. “I want to provide leadership in the community. Dr. Boyte took me and my brother under his wing. I would like to do the same thing in my life.”
Dogwood Family Dental provides services such as implants, crowns, dentures, partials, fillings, and root canals.
“Anything they need, we can do it,” Dr. Patel said.
Dogwood Family Dental works with the hospital, military, police department, Moore County School teachers, and firefighters to provide more affordable care.
“We want to make sure we give access to them,” Dr. Patel said. “There are lowered fees for people without insurance.”
The practice is in network with insurances such as Ameritas, Principal, United Concordia, Delta Dental, Sun Life Financial and soon will include Blue Cross Blue Shield
Dogwood Family Dental is located at 908 North Sandhills Blvd. in Aberdeen. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call (910) 944-5600. Be sure to visit DogwoodDental.net and email DogwoodFamilyDent@gmail.com for questions.