Celebrating Black History Month: The Pioneering Women of Healthcare

  1. Dr Rebecca Lee Crumpler- was the very first African-American woman to become a medical doctor in America.  She graduated from the New England Female Medical College in 1864 and later went on to practice in Boston, Massachusetts and Richmond, Virginia.

  2. Dr Patricia Bath- The first African-American female doctor to receive a patent for a medical invention that removes cataracts. She transformed the foundation of eye surgery by using a laser device which makes the procedure much more accurate and effective.

  3. Mary Eliza Mahoney - This woman accomplished so many incredible things! She was the first African-American professional nurse in the United States. Mahoney studies at the nursing school of the New England Hospital for Women and Children, and became the very first African-American woman to complete her nurse's training in 1879. She also has been credited as one of the first women to register to vote in Boston following the 1920's ratification of the 19th Amendment. Mahoney was inducted into both the Nursing Hall of Fame and the National Women's Hall of Fame. In 1909, Mahoney gave the welcome address at the first conference of the National Association of Colored Graduate Nurses (NACGN). In recognition of her outstanding example to nurses of all races, NACGN established the Mary Mahoney Award in 1936. When NACGN merged with the American Nurses Association in 1951, the award was continued. Today, the Mary Mahoney Award is bestowed biennially in recognition of significant contributions in interracial relationships.

  4. Dr. Alexa Irene Canady - was the first woman and the first African-American to become a neurosurgeon in the U.S.  Dr. Canady specialized as a pediatric neurosurgeon and served as chief of neurosurgery at Children’s Hospital in Michigan from 1987 -2001.  Her areas of expertise included spinal abnormalities, congenital spinal abnormalities, hydrocephalus and also trauma and brain tumors.

  5. Dr. Vada Watson Somerville - became the first African-American woman in California to receive her D.D.S. or Doctor of Dental Surgery in 1918. Dr. Somerville was the only woman and the only African-American in her class. At the state dental examination, she scored among the highest. Dr. Somerville was the second African-American woman to graduate from USC Dentistry and her husband John was the first African American person to graduate from USC dentistry.

Our values at Bella Women's Care are built around providing unique, compassionate and individualized healthcare to women of all ages, race, nationally and walks of life. 

Bella Women's Care Blogger

You Might Also Enjoy...

Questions You Should Be Asking Your Sexual Partners

Being honest with your sexual partner(s) is key, and vice versa. You should feel 100% safe, comfortable and confident before an experience with someone new. Here are some of the questions you should always be asking. Don't feel awkward, feel empowered!

COVID-19 Vaccine During Pregnancy?

The society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine and other pregnancy experts recommend a COVID-19 vaccination for pregnant and lactating mothers. Here are some of your biggest questions, answered!

Self Care for the Breast Feeding Mom

In Honor of World Breast Feeding Week, an annual campaign to raise awareness for breastfeeding around the world, let’s open up a conversation on breast feeding and how moms can take care of themselves while nursing.

I'm Pregnant and Don't Have Insurance - Now What?

Money should be your last worry when navigating a new pregnancy. Not only do we have some of the most reasonable prenatal packages in the valley, but we also offer assistance to help you apply for AHCCCS coverage, set up sensible payment plans, and more!

Pregnancy Glow Explained!

You may have heard that you’re “glowing.” With a different balance of hormones and other physical changes to your skin and hair happening, there’s actually a scientific basis to pregnancy glow.