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Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation Designates New Care Center at VCU Health To Diagnose and Treat Life-Threatening Lung Diseases

VCU Health, MCV campus, at night

VCU Health has been recognized as part of the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation’s (PFF) National Care Center Network. The PFF Care Center Network is a group of 74 medical centers with expertise in accurately diagnosing and treating individuals with pulmonary fibrosis (PF) and interstitial lung disease (ILD). As one of only six new sites that recently achieved this designation, VCU Health was selected based on its demonstrated ability to provide comprehensive and high-quality care for patients living with PF and ILD.

"Our designation as a PFF Care Center reflects our focus and commitment to the growing number of patients living with PF and ILD," said Dr. Apostolos Perelas, assistant professor, Division of Pulmonary Disease and Critical Care Medicine. "At VCU Health, our experts in pulmonology, radiology, pathology and rheumatology will care for patients as a multidisciplinary team, while also studying the causes and therapies for these complex diseases."

VCU is uniquely placed to provide care in a mixed population of patients living in both urban and rural medically underserved areas. We strive to provide personalized care, while using our resources to provide the standard of treatment to our patients regardless of their socioeconomic status.

Research is a key part of our mission. Led by Dr. Patricia Sime, professor and chair of the Department of Internal Medicine, the research laboratory is focusing on the mechanisms underlying pulmonary fibrosis and has consistently received funding from the NIH, the Pulmonary Fibrosis Foundation and philanthropy. Additionally, they offer access to novel therapies through industry-sponsored clinical trials. "These efforts help us develop the therapies for tomorrow," Sime said.

More than 250,000 Americans are living with pulmonary fibrosis and interstitial lung disease. The prevalence of PF and ILD is on the rise with more than 50,000 new cases diagnosed annually. Clinical trials are now underway to treat various forms of the diseases.

In addition to VCU Health, the other newly designated medical centers are:

  • Center for Advanced Lung Diseases at Keck Medicine of University of Southern California (Los Angeles, California).
  • Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin Froedtert Hospital (Milwaukee, Wisconsin).
  • Rush University Medical Center (Chicago, Illinois).
  • OU Health (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma).
  • University of South Florida-Tampa General Hospital (Tampa, Florida).

Learn more about VCU Health’s PF and ILD programs.