Memorial Service for Barbara bates, February 2, 2003: Barbara Bates, MD, FACP, well known professor to medical and nursing students, author, and historian died December 18, 2002 of Alzheimer's disease at her home in Bryn Mawr. A native of Auburn NY, Dr. Bates earned her BA at Smith College in 1949, then completed medical studies and residency training at Cornell University Medical College in New York City. At the new University of Kentucky College of Medicine, she began a long career focused on improving the quality and distribution of health care through patient care, teaching, interdisciplinary innovations, research and writing. Later at the University of Rochester, she gained national and international recognition as an outstanding Professor of Medicine and an activist in interdisciplinary health care.
In the late 1960's, she helped conceive and develop the then new role of nurse practitioner, working to improve public access to health care by encouraging greater collaboration between physicians and nurses and expanded practice opportunities for nurses. Her best known book, "A Guide to Physical Examination and History Taking", first published in 1974, and continuing under her direction for seven editions, became, and still is, the leading text in its field, published in eleven languages. Her expertise in diagnosis, ability to help novices comprehend the skills of examination and clinical thinking, and influence on improving education for health professionals are probably her most enduring contributions.
From 1980, until she retired in 1996, Dr. Bates held faculty positions at the University of Pennsylvania Schools of Medicine and Nursing and at the Medical College of Pennsylvania and Hahnemann University. An active member of the Section on Medical History at the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, she chaired the section for three years. A celebration of her life and a reception are planned for Sunday, February 2, 2003 beginning at 4:30 p.m. at the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, 19 South 22nd Street, Philadelphia. We hope you will attend to honor the life and accomplishments of our friend and colleague. Donations in Barbara Bates' memory may be made to the Center for the Study of the History of Nursing at the University of Pennsylvania or to the Hospice of the Visiting Nurse Association of Greater Philadelphia.