Health: Dr. Garvin Lee Chandler, now part of Harbin Clinic’s Family Medicine Adairsville, took a different route to becoming a physician.

Health: Dr. Garvin Lee Chandler, now part of Harbin Clinic’s Family Medicine Adairsville, took a different route to becoming a physician.


Media release: After working in cancer research for five years, Dr. Garvin Lee Chandler knew that he was meant for something different.

“Doing cancer research was unique and very interesting but there weren’t many opportunities to make connections with people. So, after five years, I started medical school thinking I would become an oncologist.”

Not long after beginning his schooling, he was paired with a family medicine physician for clinical care training. Little did he know that the experience would inspire him to join family medicine, instead of oncology.

“There was one patient this doctor saw four or five times a year, and every time he came in, they picked up the conversation right where they had ended it,” Dr. Chandler said. “I just thought it was cool how he knew his patients so well and was able to have friendly conversations with them. I knew then, this is what I want to do.”

Dr. Chandler will join Dr. Robert Sullivan at Harbin Clinic Family Medicine Adairsville, at 115 N. Central Ave.

“Dr. Sullivan’s practice is amazing,” says Dr. Chandler. “He is a fantastic individual, and he has built a wonderful practice. My goal has always been to have a practice like his.”

Said Dr. Sullivan: “He’s going to be a great addition to our practice. He’s very experienced and kind, and I know he will fit in well in our community.”

Dr. Sullivan also pointed out that Dr. Chandler is a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine, meaning his treatment methods are more hands-on for treating symptoms of physical pain. “He’s expressed his interest in continuing to do osteopathic medicine for those people who are in pain and have muscular and skeletal issues.” 

During his time in undergraduate school, Dr. Chandler’s little sister was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma, which is a cancer of the body’s lymphatic system. He took time off from his sports training to help take care of her, in turn helping out his parents, as well. Today, Dr. Chandler’s sister is healthy and thriving, but it was those oncology appointments that piqued his interest in healthcare years ago.

“Seeing her doctors work to help her beat cancer really got me interested in the medical field, and that’s when I started to think about doing cancer research, and later, becoming a physician.”

For his undergraduate, Dr. Chandler studied biology at Baylor University in Waco, Texas and received his Bachelor of Science. There, he also played football and was a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, where he met his wife, Laura. After undergrad, he stayed and received his Master of Science in Biology. Later, he would attend the University of North Texas in Fort Worth and receive his Medical Doctorate in Osteopathic Medicine.

Dr. Chandler completed his family medicine residency at Floyd Medical Center. He and Laura will raise their 4-year-old daughter and infant son in Rome. He adds, “We really love the people, the small-town feel and the geography. There are places to go hiking, rivers for kayaking, and so many other opportunities to enjoy the outdoors. We used to go fishing, and we’re trying to introduce our daughter to sports activities.”

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