William Curtis (Curt) Patton is a pediatrician who has served the Mississippi River delta community of East Arkansas for the past thirty years. He has been not only a beloved physician to three generations of Arkansas children, but a health care mainstay in a medically underserved rural area. One of those challenges common to rural areas has been the attraction of more health providers to the area. Undeterred, Dr. Patton has trained not only new graduate physicians but also promoted the practice of advanced practice nurse colleagues in order to provide care in this medically underserved area of East Arkansas.
Dr. Patton’s family have been natives to Arkansas for several generations. He was born in Pine Bluff AR in 1954. He was Phi Beta Kappa at LSU where he completed his undergraduate degree. At the University of Alabama Birmingham, he graduated Alpha Omega Alpha in the top 10% of his Medical School Class. He completed his pediatric residency at the University of Tennessee LeBonheur Children’s Medical Center in 1982 and moved to Forrest City to pursue his passion for providing health care in rural and underserved communities by opening the only pediatric clinic in a five county area. One of his first accomplishments was the opening of a Level II Nursery with the support of the Memphis Newborn Center to meet the serious health needs of a high percentage of sick newborns. In 1994 he was awarded a grant by the American Academy of Pediatrics to open a preschool for developmentally delayed preschool children. The school, Kids for the Future, has expanded to reach children in several nearby communities. Most recently he opened a clinic for evaluation of children with Autism.
Dr. Patton has served as President of the Medical Staff and President of the Hospital Board at Forrest City Medical Center, President of the Arkansas Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, and served on the Arkansas Governor’s Task Force on Health Care Reform in 1996. More years than not, he has been selected among the Mid South “Best Docs” by his physician peers and has been honored by the Arkansas Nurses Association for his contribution to insuring access to health care delivered by Advanced Practice Nurses. In 2013, he was recognized for his 30 years of service by Arkansas Governor Beebe and a flag was flown over the United States Capitol to honor that service. Throughout the three decades of practice, Dr. Patton has maintained close ties to both LeBonheur and Arkansas Children’s Health Systems.