Chief Medical Officer
Dr. Piramzadian is a Board Certified Emergency Medicine Physician. He has lived in North Carolina since 2014. He graduated from Stony Brook University with a Bachelor of Science in 2005. He attended Medical School at Touro University of California, graduating in 2010. In 2014, Dr. Piramzadian graduated from his residency program at Doctors Hospital Ohio Health in Columbus, Ohio. Since he has moved to N.C., he has been working at Onslow Memorial Hospital Emergency Department and joined MedFirst in 2016.
Dr. Piramzadian is an advocate for his patients and his community. He volunteers his time with the Onslow County Tactical Unit and also works to educate the public on health care related concerns. Dr. Piramzadian is also an advocate for his staff and gained fame in 2015 for his viral post regarding the importance of nurses and was interviewed by many local and national news organizations. Dr. Piramzadian lives by the motto "I shall not leave my city any less but rather greater than I found it" and treats approximately 10,000 patients a year and is always on call for patient emergencies in order to provide you with best care possible.
Dr. Harry Messec is a family practitioner in North Carolina. Dr. Messec has long been a leader in immediate care, particularly in Jacksonville and Sneads Ferry, NC, where he continually advocates for the highest medical standards. In 1992, “Hal” Messec completed his MD at the prestigious University of Texas Health Science Center in Tyler, Texas. He interned at Mercy Medical Center in Dallas, and performed his medical residency at West Virginia University Hospital. Dr. Messec is the founder of Croatan Primary Care, Southwest Medical Center, Emerald Isle Medical Center, and his newest division—Med First Immediate Care & Family Practice, which has two Jacksonville, NC, locations and one location in Sneads Ferry. His passion for his profession has a wide reach in North Carolina. He continues to raise the bar for outstanding medical service and professional integrity.
Patients within North Carolina have likely felt Dr. Messec’s influence—whether whether they’ve met him personally or not—through the many medical care centers he worked hard to establish. Med First Immediate Care & Family Practice owes a great deal to its founder. Visit a Med First Immediate Care clinic for convenient, professional medical care when you need it most. Board Certified in Family Practice.
Sneads Ferry & Southwest Jacksonville
A graduate of the Medical University of South Carolina (1999), Dr. Richardson performed his residency at the McLeod Regional Medical Center in Florence, SC. Dr. Richardson's practice focus is in the area of general family practice & immediate care. Wendell Richardson graduated from the Medical University of South Carolina in 1999. He completed his residency at the McLeod Regional Medical Center in Florence, SC, in family medicine. Today he maintains an affiliation with the Southeastern Regional Medical Center in Lumberton, NC. Wendell Richardson, MD, focuses his practice at Med First Immediate Care in general family practice and immediate care. The Med First clinics allow patients to see Dr. Richardson for same-day appointments (for pressing illnesses and injuries) or at regularly scheduled appointments (for checkups and physicals).
Dr. Richardson is recognized as a valued, experienced doctor. His patients often say that Dr. Richardson is “compassionate and really cares about his patients.” He is well known for providing excellent care during an appointment, as well as for following-up with patients after their visits. Dr. Richardson is available at two of the Med First Immediate Care facilities in Jacksonville (Dolphin Dr. and Richlands Hwy) and at our clinic in Emerald Isle. He accepts most insurance plans including Medicare. Dr. Richardson and the Med First Immediate Care clinics want to help every patient enjoy daily health. Dr. Richardson is currently accepting new patients so come in and meet him today!
Blake Moore studied medicine at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey in Newark. He completed his residency in general surgery at St. Francis Medical Center in Trenton, NJ, where he was chief resident. Dr. Moore has vast experience as a medical director and surgeon in both the private and public sector. He has received a CIME certification and is a Fellow with the American College of Surgeons. He maintains memberships with the American Medical Association, Southern Medical Association, and Semmelweis Society International. As a board-certified general surgeon, he has gained valuable experience which he now uses to treat his patients at our Med First Urgent Care clinic.
Dr. Blake Moore currently practices family medicine and general surgery. A recent patient remarked, “He is dedicated, caring, knowledgeable, takes your fear away, always accessible, proficient in his ability, and an outstanding doctor.” Patients may visit Dr. Moore at our Med First Urgent Care clinic located in Dillon, South Carolina. Our clinics focus on care for the individual and family. Dr. Moore is exceptionally qualified to address general medical issues and surgical procedures such as trauma, colonoscopy, gallbladder removal, appendix removal, etc. Dr. Moore is accepting new patients.
Dr. Gillian Aylward has been in family practice for 27 years. She graduated from medical school at Memorial University of Newfoundland (Canada) and completed here residency training in Dalhousie University (Nova Scotia, Canada). Having practiced in Canada for several years, she then went on to practice with Duke University Affiliated physicians for several more years.
Throughout her career, the mainstay of her practice has been family medicine. She also has experience in OB/GYN, Urgent Care & Emergency Medicine. Dr. Aylward enjoys the scope of family practice and honors the role of being the patient's advocate. She is married with 3 adult children. Her interest include gardening, kayaking, paddleboarding, swimming and golf.
Physicians Immediate Care
Dr. Wayne Haga was born and raised in Jacksonville, North Carolina. He graduated from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1984 with his Bachelor of Arts in Chemistry and a minor in Psychology. He obtained his graduate degree in 1988 from the East Carolina University School of Medicine. He went on to complete his Family Medicine Residency in Newport News, Virginia at the Riverside Family Practice Residency Program.
Dr. Haga is a Board-Certified Family Physician with over 25 years of experience in private practice as a Family Practitioner and has extensive experience in Urgent Care and Emergency Medicine as well. Dr. Haga enjoys the full spectrum of Family Medicine. He is dedicated and devoted to treating the whole person, each organ, and every disease, while providing care for all ages and genders. He believes in focusing on the ongoing personal patient-physician relationship, while offering continuous, comprehensive, and integrated care to his patients. He offers a wide range of services including wellness care and disease management and prevention. Dr. Haga can also provide dermatology services and perform minor surgical procedures.
In his spare time, Dr. Haga enjoys family activities with his four children, playing guitar, reading, martial arts and water and snow sporting activities.
Dr. Mel attended medical school at the Aristotelian University in Thessaloniki, Greece where he graduated Magna Cum Laude. He is board certified in Internal Medicine and Sleep Medicine. He is also ACLS certified.
Dr. Mel has a deep sense of duty to his patients and his community. He has been proudly serving the Statesville, NC community for over twenty years.
Sonya Burke Williams, RN, MSN, HCE, FNP-C
Family Practice Nurse Practitioner
Mrs. Williams was born in North Carolina and raised in both Carolinas. A lifelong learner, she obtained her Associate Degree in Nursing from The University of South Carolina Sumter/Central Carolina in 1988. She went on to obtain a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing from The University of South Carolina, a Masters Degree in Healthcare and Nursing Leadership/Management and a Masters level certificate in Healthcare Education both from Regis University in Denver, CO. She holds a Post-Masters certificate as a Family Nurse Practitioner from the University of Massachusetts and is returning to UMass to pursue her Doctorate in Nursing Practice (DNP). Sonya holds National Certification from the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) as a Family Practice Nurse Practitioner, and is ACLS, PALS, and BLS certified. She is an active member of the Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society for Nursing, The North Carolina Nurses Association, and The California Nurses Association and is a member of both the AANP and the American Nurses Association (ANA).
Her career highlights include being an Intensive Care Registered Nurse who has worked in Surgical/Trauma ICU at Walter Reed Medical Center in Washington, DC, Surgical/Trauma ICU at The University of California Irvine, and in Cardiac Intensive Care units at the Medical College of Virginia Hospitals and MICU and CCU at New Hanover Regional Medical Center. She served as a Clinical research coordinator for the University of Massachusetts on many clinical trials for cardiac meds, procedures, and cardiac stents, most notably for the drug Plavix and the TIMI studies –which brought forth coronary drug eluding stents. Sonya served for seven years as the Director of Critical Care Services at South Coast Medical Center in Laguna Beach, CA and is the co-owner of Atlantic Healthcare Educators – providing Continuing Education for RNs, LPNs, CNAs, Respiratory Therapists, Nurse Practitioners, Physician Assistants, and Physicians, since 1996. She has also held faculty positions in the College of Nursing at Cape Fear Community College and at Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, AZ, and serves as a Clinical Instructor for Family Practice Nurse Practitioner students for the University of North Carolina Wilmington.
Her areas of specialty are Family Practice, Women's Health, Pain Management, and Allergies and Asthma care which she delivers to her patients utilizing the Holistic Model of Advanced Practice Nursing at Med First, where she has found her practice home.
Tonya Lewis, PA-C
Tonya Humphreys-Lewis is a native of Charleston, SC. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree from the College of Charleston and went on to receive her Masters in Science from the Medical University of South Carolina. Since 2005 she has practiced family and internal medicine, emergency medicine and been an understudy with a leading endocrinologist in the specialty of endocrinology. She felt the important need for community outreach and worked in a rural area for four years treating indigent and migrant patients to ensure quality health care to that population. She has participated in medical and evangelical missions to South Africa and Nicaragua. She has enjoyed counseling pediatric cancer patients for summer camps and volunteering in health fairs to increase awareness of diabetes, heart disease and the negative outcomes associated with obesity. She enjoys encouraging young girls to become active in their daily lives to improve their health, self-image and aspirations with programs like Girls On the Run.
Physicians Immediate Care
Katy Howell, PA-C
Katy Howell was born and raised in Middletown, New York. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from Stony Brook University in 2006 and
continued on to earn her Master's Degree in Physician Assistant Studies in 2012.
Upon graduation, Katy moved to Columbus, Ohio where she began working at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in the lnterventional Radiology Department as well as working at the Emergency Department at Ohio Health's Doctors Hospital. Katy relocated to Jacksonville, North Carolina in July 2014 to work at Med First Urgent Care. She prides herself on providing excellent care and patient satisfaction.
In her spare time, Katy enjoys spending time with her family, cooking, sampling good wine and outdoor activities.
Whitney L. Crain, PA-C
My name is Whitney Crain and I am a Physician Assistant and a Registered Dietitian. I started my healthcare career as a dietitian focusing primarily in medical nutrition therapy and nutrition support. I received an additional credential as a Certified Nutrition Support Clinician. I worked as a dietitian for two years before going to PA school. I spent one year in Guatemala working in a pediatric ward and with the malnourished. I also worked back in the states with the geriatrics
Since attaining a Master’s degree in Physician Assistant studies, I have worked primarily in Family Practice. I do have additional training in both cardiology and internal medicine.
My practice philosophy is more of a holistic approach. I take into consideration the entire patient and confounding factors. I am a huge advocate for preventive medicine and healthy lifestyles. I strongly encourage healthy eating habits and a well-rounded life-style.
I encourage patients to be active and involved in their own healthcare and take the time to explain things to each individual. I provide education and resources to promote overall wellbeing.
Whitney received her Bachelor’s Degree in Nutrition and Dietetics at Western Michigan University in Michigan in 2008 where she graduated with honors. She continued her studies and received her Masters of Science in Physician Assistant at Seton Hill University in Pennsylvania in 2013. Whitney has a host of Physician Assistant clinical rotations that has allowed her to gain a broad knowledge and experience in Medicine. Whitney is also a registered Dietitian. We are proud to add her to our distinguished clinical team.
Danielle Hayes, PA-C
Danielle is a board certified physician assistant who graduated with a Master of Clinical Medical Science from Barry University in Miami, FL. She is originally from Long Island, NY. She attended the University of South Florida in Tampa, FL where she graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelor’s degree in Exercise Science all while competing on the track and cross country teams.
Prior to attending PA school, she worked at Mease Countryside Hospital in Clearwater, FL as a patient care technician on a Med/Surg/Tele floor for 1.5 years where she dealt mostly with the geriatric population. In addition to her experience in the hospital, she gained a broad-based knowledge through clinical rotations while in PA school including Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, OB/GYN, Pediatrics, Emergency Medicine, Behavioral Health, and Surgery. Danielle’s practice philosophy is to use evidence-based medicine with a patient-centered approach to provide the most appropriate patient care in a timely and efficient manner.
Regina Gum, PA-C
Regina Gum is a graduate of Mountain State University in Beckley, WV with a degree as a Physician Assistant. She has over 14 years of clinical practice in Urgent Care and Family Medicine. She has been an avid volunteer. She spent several weeks in Sumter South Carolina after hurricane Hugo repairing the dwellings of elderly persons who were in need. She volunteered for the Red Cross after a devastating flood in 1985, in West Virginia providing immediate relief for flood victims. She has also helped with many other local community projects in her home state of West Virginia. She really enjoys working with people.
Regina is a NCCPA board certified and have certifications in ACLS,BLS, and as a DOT medical examiner. She is excited to join the Med First team at their Southport location and looks forward to providing health care services to both local residents and visitors to the area.
Bertha Taylor-Miller, MSN-FNP
Bertha Taylor-Miller is a North Carolina Licensed, Board Certified Family Nurse Practitioner and Entrepreneur. She is highly experienced and accomplished with twenty seven years of experience in the health care profession. Her expertise includes physical examinations, acute and chronic care, wellness exams, with expertise in managing health issues with evidence based medicine. She exemplifies a strong knowledge of industry trends and patient education along with a proven track record of success in entrepreneurship and management. Bertha has a background working with inferiority and under served populations. She loves communicating with patients, relatives, doctors other collaborative care personnel.
Sneads Ferry & Jacksonville
John Morykon grew up in Wilmington, North Carolina, and attended East Carolina University. There he graduated Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelors of Science in Biology and a Masters degree in Medical Science. He also attended Campbell University, where he played baseball and named to the A-Sun Conference All-Academic Team in 2004.
As a fully licensed and certified Physician Assistant, John Morykon has years of experience in the medical field, performing duties such as:
John is a valuable member of the medical team in our Sneads Ferry location and also serves our Jacksonville locations. His professional and friendly demeanor make him a pleasure to work with. His clinical rotations have included shifts in geriatrics, pediatrics, internal medicine, surgery, emergency medicine, women’s health, behavioral medicine, and family medicine.
We are fortunate to have John Morykon on board at Med First Immediate Care & Family Practice. His knowledge and skills as a physician assistant make him an indispensable team member.
Truman Gartman, PA-C
Physicians Immediate Care
Kaylin Petrosky, PA-C
Kaylin Petrosky was born and raised in Belle Vernon, PA. She graduated from the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg in 2011 with her Bachelor of Science in Biological Science. In May 2014 Kaylin graduated with a Masters of Physician Assistant Studies from Seton Hill University in Greensburg, PA and is a certified Physician Assistant.
During her Physician Assistant program she traveled to Guatemala on two different occasions with a team of Physician Assistant’s for medical mission trips. Her clinical experiences during the mission trips and PA school helped fulfill a strong desire to be able to educate and help improve the healthcare of patients by becoming an active part of their long-term health goals, which she hopes to continue during her professional career.
Kaylin is a member of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, North Carolina Academy of Physician Assistants,certified in BLS/ACLS, and is a DOT certified medical examiner. Kaylin has been with the Med First team since August 2014. During her time with Med First she has worked collaboratively with her supervising physician and other providers within the Med First team to try and give her patients the best care possible. Special interests include OB/GYN and general practice, although she has had experience with psychiatry, general surgery, pediatrics, emergency medicine, internal medicine.
Emerald Isle & Physicians Immediate Care
Gary started his medical career by enlisting in the Army as a medic right out of high school. Over the next several years he attended numerous medical courses and advanced through the ranks, culminating in graduating from the US Army Physician Assistant Course in August of 1990.
Some of his more notable assignments included being an Anatomy and Physiology instructor at the US Army’s Academy of Health Sciences, San Antonio, TX; a member of the Medical Team, Site R Nuclear Contingency Site, Camp David, MD: Medical Officer of a Joint Command POW/MIA Search team, Barbers Point, HI; Medical Officer of a Combat Engineer Battalion, 2nd Infantry Division, Korea; Medical Officer, Hurricane Andrew Relief Effort, and two tours with the US Army’s 82nd Airborne Division, retiring as the Medical Officer of a Parachute Infantry Battalion.
Upon retiring from the Army, Gary entered Emergency Medicine, working in several Emergency Departments, to include the ED’s of two Level 1 Trauma Centers. He also worked for a renowned Eastern North Carolina Plastic Surgeon before returning to General Medicine. Gary returned to General Medicine working in Urgent Care before joining the Med First family in January of 2015. Gary comes to Med First with over 40 years of experience in the medical field.
His hobbies include boating and biking, and collecting PEZ dispensers (of which he has over 800). He and his wife Alicia reside in Cedar Point.
Katrina Williams is a board certified Physician Assistant with experience working in the American Samoa Islands (2009-2011), where she worked in both the Family Medicine and Emergency Department providing care for pediatrics through geriatrics. She completed her undergraduate degree from Messiah College and obtained her graduate from Duke University School of Medicine.
Katrina has volunteer experience with the World Church Organization, Lion’s Club (American Samoa) , Sieuy Llik (Panama), Water Street Rescue Mission (Lancaster, PA), and Bethesda Missions ( Harrisburg, PA).
Betty completed undergraduate degree and graduate work from UNC Chapel Hill and obtained her graduate from Duke University School of Medicine.
Betty provides urgent care services for all ages, handles workman’s compensation injuries, participates and leads emergency procedures as required and performs minor surgical procedures, X-ray interpretation and splinting.Betty is married and enjoys spending time with her husband and seven children, traveling and running.
Physicians Immediate Care
Marsha has more than 25 years of experience in nursing spanning the spectrum of healthcare both within the hospital arena and outpatient care and a lifetime learner. Marsha graduated from Western Carolina University with MSN Degree, Family Nurse Practitioner certification. Since stepping into the provider role as FNP, her work has included primary care, occupational and employee health and urgent care. Marsha began her role as a Family Nurse Practitioner in Asheville, NC. She worked for two years in a public health services clinic while also assisting a local physician starting one of the state's only office practice urgent care clinics open seven days a week.
Marsha practices holistically, meaning she includes all parts of a patient's life including body, mind and spirit as well as resources and support networks that are available. She strives to provide compassionate, competent care to all.
Marsha is a native to North Carolina and is married to the great love of her life, James. The pair have parented six children. Marsha and James recently moved to the area from Asheville, NC.
Jessica Holmes, PA-C
Jessica Holmes is a board certified Physician Assistant who graduated with a Master of Medical Science degree from Methodist University in Fayetteville, NC in 2012. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Biology and minor in Chemistry from Fayetteville State University, graduating with honors. She is originally from Ohio, but has lived in North Carolina for the past 15 years.
She is highly experienced in family practice and urgent care, diagnosing and treating a variety of illnesses from the pediatric to geriatric population, but also in dermatology; focusing on acne, diagnosing and treating various types of skin cancers, and general dermatology. She completed numerous rotations while attending PA school, primarily in family medicine, internal medicine, pediatrics, emergency medicine, surgery, women’s health, behavior medicine and dermatology. She is a patient-centered provider who focuses on the individual while practicing evidence-based medicine.
Outside of patient care, she enjoys spending time with her husband, who honorably served in the United States Army, and their two children.
Nolan Crain, PA-C
Nolan Crain is a board certified Physician Assistant who graduated with his Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies from Seton Hill University in 2013. He began he career as a Physician Assistant serving in the United States Navy where he was attached to a Marine Corps Battalion in Camp Lejeune, NC. There he had the privilege of providing quality medical care to Marines and Sailors in office and combat deployment settings. Through his work experience and clinical rotations in primary care, geriatrics, emergency medicine, women’s health, psychiatry, internal medicine, general surgery, pediatrics, and sports medicine he has developed a wide knowledge base to provide exceptional care to his patients ensuring the best possible quality of life for all those under his care. He prides himself in taking a holistic, patient centered approach to every visit and is dedicated to the use of evidence based medicine to make the best clinical decisions in order to provide the best possible outcomes.
Kristi Massey, FNP-C
Kristi Massey is a Certified Family Nurse Practitioner with a background in Intensive Care, Urgent Care and Family Practice. Kristi obtained her Master of Science Degree-Family Nurse Practitioner Certification from
Winston-Salem State University, a constituent institution of The University of North Carolina. She is a member of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) and practices evidence based medicine to ensure delivery of the best possible patient care.
Research interests include preventing the diversion and misuse of prescription medications among adolescents and adults. Kristi has presented her research and manuscript "Nonmedical Prescription Drug Use among Adolescents in the United States: Potential Provider Interventions" at numerous Research Symposiums. She thrives to maintain the health of America's youth and is a strong patient advocate.
Kristi enjoys spending time with her husband, son and numerous pets. She likes writing and has had several publications over the years. Kristi loves to travel and learn new things by experiencing them for herself!
Holly Deaver, PA-C
Holly Deaver was born and raised in Canton in the Appalachian Mountains of North Carolina. She graduated from North Carolina Wesleyan College in 2012 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry with minor concentrations in Mathematics and Biology. She graduated from East Carolina University in 2016 with a Masters of Science in Physician Assistant Studies.
Holly has a passion for rural medicine and is dedicated to providing comprehensive, evidence-based care to her patients. She is committed to understanding the goals and expectations of her patients and upholding an ongoing, compassionate patient-provider relationship.
Holly is a member of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, the North Carolina Academy of Physician Assistants, is certified in BLS/ACLS, and (will be} a DOT certified medical examiner.
Dale Wicker, DNP, FNP-BC
Dale Wicker, DNP, FNP-BC received his Doctorate in Nursing Practice from Gardner-Webb University in May 2016. He received his Masters in Nursing with specialty in Family Medicine from East Tennessee State University in December 1999. His experience is primarily in family medicine and urgent care medicine.
Dale currently lives in Claremont. He is married with three children. In his spare time Dale enjoys playing basketball, golf and trout fishing.