Dr. Bateman to Retire

Dr. Mark Bateman was in high school in 1972 when he first walked through the doors of the Eye Clinic as a patient for treatment of an eye problem.

On June 30, 2022, the board-certified ophthalmologist will officially retire from the Eye Clinic after 28 years of diagnosing, treating and providing eye care for his own patients.

“It was a privilege to practice medicine at the Eye Clinic,” Dr. Bateman said.

His interest in ophthalmology started when he was young; his father’s dental office in Lexington was next door to an optometry practice. His parents, the late Maurice and Marian Bateman, had both served in the U.S. Air Force.

After earning his bachelor’s degree from Murray State University, Dr. Bateman decided to pursue a medical degree in ophthalmology.

He was accepted into the Military Health Professional Scholarship Program, and the U.S. government paid for three years of medical school. He earned his medical degree from East Tennessee State University.

He served his internship at the Naval Hospital in San Diego; his flight surgery training was in Pensacola, Fla., and his residency was at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. He served two years as a flight surgeon at NSA Millington and then spent another two years at the Naval Hospital in Jacksonville, Florida, as a staff ophthalmologist.

After nine years of active duty in the Navy and the completion of his obligated service, he was ready to practice ophthalmology as a civilian. (He continued his military career in the U.S. Naval Reserve, retiring in 2006 as a captain.)

His uncle, who had just retired from the U.S. Navy, was a patient of Dr. Ben House, the founder of the Eye Clinic. When Dr. House found out that Dr. Bateman was looking for a place to practice, he called and asked him to consider joining the Eye Clinic.

“It was a chance to come back close to home,” said Dr. Bateman. “I couldn’t pass it up.”
He began his practice at the Eye Clinic with Dr. House, Dr. Jim Price, Dr. Bruce Herron and Dr. Arthur Woods in 1994.

As he established his practice, he found himself treating family members, former teachers and friends with whom he grew up. “Though you take care of all of your patients the best you can,” he said, “it’s a bit more stressful when you’re taking care of someone you’ve known all of your life.”

His clinical specialties are oculoplastics, cataracts, glaucoma and retina.  

Dr. Bateman began telling his patients about his retirement last July as they came in for annual eye checkups.

He plans to stay busy in retirement. He and his wife, Jennifer, plan to spend more time camping in their RV; they have a trip to East Tennessee this fall. The parents of two daughters and a son, the Batemans enjoy time with their six grandchildren. Dr. Bateman also plans on making “more sawdust and shavings” as he enjoys woodworking projects in his workshop.

“I’ll keep a routine; I know I will stay busy,” he said. “I’ll miss the practice of ophthalmology and seeing my patients, but I don’t think I’ll miss the business of medicine.”

Education

Dr. Bateman received his medical degree from East Tennessee State University.

He served his internship at the Naval Hospital in San Diego and his residency at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. He earned his undergraduate degree from Murray State University.

Dr. Bateman is Board Certified by the American Board of Ophthalmology with a fellowship in the American Academy of Ophthalmology.

Clinical Specialties

  • Eyelids
  • Cataracts
  • Diabetic eye care

Memberships

  • Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society
  • American Academy of Ophthalmology
  • Tennessee Academy of Ophthalmology

Personal

Because he experienced an eye problem as a child, Dr. Bateman felt he could empathize with patients suffering eye problems and became an ophthalmologist to assist others with their vision difficulties. After practicing ophthalmology in the U.S. Navy, he joined the Eye Clinic because of its longstanding reputation of providing quality eye care.

Dr. Bateman, who is a retired captain in the U.S. Naval Reserve, enjoys spending time with his wife, three children and four grandchildren, as well as tinkering with vintage Volkswagens and woodworking.