Dr. Bath was an American ophthalmologist, inventor, humanitarian, and academic.
She was an early pioneer of laser cataract surgery. She also became first woman member of the Jules Stein Eye Institute, first woman to lead a post-graduate training program in ophthalmology, and first woman elected to the honorary staff of the UCLA Medical Center.
Dr. Bath was the first African American person to serve as a resident in ophthalmology at New York University. She was also the first African American woman to serve on staff as a surgeon at the UCLA Medical Center.
Dr. Bath was the first African American woman physician to receive a patent for a medical purpose.
The holder of five patents, in 1976, she also founded the non-profit American Institute for the Prevention of Blindness (AIPB) in Los Angeles, California, as a non-profit organization dedicated to the prevention of blindness through programs designed to PROTECT, PRESERVE, and RESTORE the Gift of Sight. We are founded on the principle that EYESIGHT IS A BASIC HUMAN RIGHT and that PRIMARY EYE CARE must be a component of Basic Health Services provided free if necessary for all humankind.
Dr. Patrica Bath's legacy will live on especially in young women all over the world who dare to be different and strive for excellence while shattering the glass ceiling.