Bhavik Patel, MD

Start Year


Hoffman Estates, IL

Loyola University Chicago

Medical School
University of Illinois

What are your career goals?
Choosing between several specialties, but want a career in academic medicine with a focus on medical education.

What did you do the summer before internship?
I got married to my wife Kelli and traveled the country to visit friends and family. 

The program leadership is relentlessly committed to resident training and are always available for anything from questions or concerns to fostering connections with specialty-specific mentors. 

Bhavik Patel

Reflections on the Duke Program

What were you looking for in a residency program? 
I was looking for a program that had the strong community atmosphere, but also rigorous clinical curriculum to help me become the best physician I could be. Coupled with being a top academic research institution, Duke had a great mix of these things and research initiatives addressing health disparities making it the perfect fit for me.

What are the strengths of the Duke program? 
The Duke program has so much to offer from rigorous clinical training to opportunities in practice-transforming clinical research. Above all, however, the most apparent has been the people. The program leadership is relentlessly committed to resident training and are always available for anything from questions or concerns to fostering connections with specialty-specific mentors. The faculty we work with on the wards are world class and have a great balance with respecting resident autonomy while also teaching. The administrative staff are equally committed and are always there to help with whatever logistics/paperwork residents face. My co-interns and senior residents are extremely kind, knowledgable and talented. I am amazed about how much everyone is committed to the Duke Family. 

What are your observations about the relationships between faculty and house staff? 
The Duke faculty are extremely knowledgeable and down-to-earth. They all have impressive backgrounds, but are very easy to work with and do a great job with respecting resident autonomy. The Duke faculty are genuinely committed to resident education and growth. 

Tell us about your co-interns. How long did it take to connect? 
Simply put, my co-interns are amazing. We connected as a group almost immediately and were hanging out together at local spots within the first day of knowing each other. The program leadership does an amazing job of picking a group of people that support and motivate each other. Everyone has a shared commitment to each other's success and are willing to help out with whatever, whether it's in the hospital or with anything in life. We really are committed to the Duke Family. 

What has surprised you most about Duke? 
How many faculty members are willing to mentor or coach residents throughout their training. 

About Duke University and Durham

What's best about living in Durham and the Triangle?
The triangle has so many things to do and the list can seem endless at times. The number of amazing restaurants and breweries in Durham alone is quite impressive. Also, just outside of the Triangle, there's mountains and hiking to the west and the beach is only 2 hours east, both easily doable during a weekend. 

How does the Triangle appeal to people of diverse backgrounds?
My wife and I came from Chicago, so we did have some reservations about moving to a smaller city like Durham. However, we have been pleasantly surprised with the diversity of people both at Duke and in the city. There are young, talented people working in all fields (not just medicine). Raleigh is a hub for several major companies and is a short drive away. Coupled with Duke and UNC, the Triangle has a diverse array of people from all over the world. I have always felt that the people are extremely welcoming of people from all backgrounds. 

Where did you choose to live, and why?
My wife and I chose to live in West Village in downtown Durham because we wanted to get acquainted with the city, meet new people and have access to restaurants and breweries in the city. We also have a dog and wanted to have parks close-by. It's been great living here so far and we've been able to meet tons of people including fellow dog owners. 

Based on your life, what advice would you give about moving to Durham?
If you're moving to Durham for the first time, I would definitely come in to the city earlier to figure out where you want to live since there's so many options from renting/buying a house to living in a mid-rise apartment downtown. 

What do you like to do outside of medicine?
I enjoy photography, lifting weights, running, relaxing with my wife and playing with our bloodhound.