For more than a year, East Contra Costa County residents lacked access to a local endocrinologist. Many who needed this specialized care were forced to travel outside their community. In response to this need, Sutter Delta Medical Center assisted Springhill Medical Group in recruiting Dr. Patel.
“An endocrinologist plays an important role for patients who are hospitalized with diabetes and other metabolic issues,” said Sutter Delta CEO Gary Rapaport. “We felt it was extremely important for the health of our community to recruit an endocrinologist who will practice full-time in East County.”
Patel and his wife (an obstetrician specializing in high-risk obstetrics) chose to relocate to the East Bay from New York City.
“It’s very exciting to be working in East County,” said Patel. “The response from patients has been very welcoming, and they are happy to have someone who can see and treat them right here in their community.”
Patel added that endocrinologists also specialize in thyroid and pituitary gland disorders, low testosterone and other hormone-related conditions. Generally, patients are referred to an endocrinologist by their primary-care physician, and a collaborative relationship between the two doctors can significantly reduce the time it takes to make a diagnosis and formulate an effective treatment plan.
“Endocrinologists are responsible for managing the symptoms of hormonal disorders,” said Patel. “Primary-care physicians usually do a good job of identifying and initially treating diseases like diabetes, but some patients have more complex and complicated symptoms that are more difficult to control. That’s where we can help.”
Patel, who looks forward to working with the many primary-care and internal-medicine physicians who practice in East County, is an active member of Sutter Delta’s medical staff and operates offices in Brentwood and Pittsburg.