University of Florida Health has been designated a member of the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation’s Care Center Network, making it one of just 60 medical centers nationwide with the highest level of expertise and resources for the treatment of interstitial lung disease.
UF Health was one of 15 centers recently added to the network. The UF Health interstitial lung disease program serves a large geographic area in central and northern Florida, southern Georgia and southern Alabama. The closest member of the network is in Charleston, S.C., about 316 miles away.
Borna Mehrad, M.D., a professor and chief of the UF College of Medicine’s division of pulmonary, critical care and sleep medicine, said the designation will help patients and physicians more quickly identify UF Health as a referral center for interstitial lung disease.
More than 40,000 people die from pulmonary fibrosis in the U.S. annually and more than 200,000 Americans live with the disease, the foundation said. About 50,000 new cases are diagnosed each year. Although there is no known cure for most of these diseases, many patients do well if they are appropriately diagnosed and treated.