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Neil S. Patel Memorial Fund


Neil S. Patel Memorial Fund

The New York Eye & Ear Infirmary Class of 2009 is shocked and saddened at the loss of our dear friend, Dr. Neil S Patel. Neil was a rock for all of us during residency and beyond. He passed away at the age of 45 on January 6, 2022.


Born in Pointe Claire, Quebec and raised in Watchung, NJ, Neil began his academic career at Columbia University, earning a B.S. in Applied Mathematics and an M.S. in Applied Physics, followed by a medical degree from SUNY Health Science Center at Brooklyn. He completed a one-year internship in general surgery at Lenox Hill Hospital. Neil completed his ophthalmology residency with us at the New York Eye & Ear Infirmary from 2006-2009. We were not only co-residents, but neighbors, confidants and friends. He then went on to complete a fellowship in vitreoretinal diseases and surgery at the University of California at Irvine.


In 2014, Neil returned to New York City and created an independent practice, New York Ophthalmology. Beginning in the Bronx as one man’s dream to start his own practice, it quickly blossomed into a multi-subspecialty practice spanning 5 locations in 4 boroughs. As a leader and fearless surgeon, Neil worked tirelessly in pursuit of his vision: to meet the needs of New York City’s underserved populations with honor and integrity, never shying away from the toughest cases. Neil was involved in other entrepreneurial ventures and had his sights set on opening practices in other states at the time of his passing.


Besides his work at New York Ophthalmology, Neil also served as Clinical Assistant Professor at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and an Adjunct Professor at SUNY Optometry. He was also an attending physician at the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai, The Mount Sinai Hospital, Montefiore Medical Center, and St. Barnabas Hospital. He specialized in complex retinal detachment repair and complex anterior segment surgeries as well as cataract surgery. He was well respected and loved by his patients, staff and colleagues.


Besides an astute clinician, talented surgeon and imaginative entrepreneur, Neil was undeniably charismatic, funny and fun loving. Most importantly, he was a caring friend to each of us.  


We created the Neil S. Patel Memorial Fund in order to establish an annually distributed scholarship for low-vision students to achieve their higher education goals (college, graduate school, and beyond.) We hope that they can carry forward Dr Neil Patel's legacy of hard work, honor, and dedication to support the under-served. We hope to honor Neil’s memory by inspiring future generations of ophthalmologists with the story of his life and career.


To make a donation, please visit this website:


Arlene H. The, MD

Olivia L Lee, MD

Madhavi Kurli, MD

Lior Haim, MD 

Annie E. Wishna, MD

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