University of Alabama Clinic Joins Global Alliance for Sarcoidosis Care
Alliance seeks to form clinical network that provides better patient-centered care
The Multidisciplinary Sarcoidosis Clinic at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Marnix E. Heersink School of Medicine has joined as a founding member of the Global Sarcoidosis Alliance, an initiative led by the Foundation for Sarcoidosis Research (FSR).
The alliance has nearly 40 founding members, with the goal of forming a network of hospitals and clinics dedicated to providing evidence-based, patient-centered care for people living with sarcoidosis.
“We are excited to contribute to this new alliance and push the margin forward in understanding and eventually curing sarcoidosis for thousands of patients in Alabama and worldwide,” Joseph Barney, MD, director of the clinic, said in a university press release.
Sarcoidosis affects about 150,000 people in US and more than a million worldwide
Sarcoidosis is an inflammatory disease characterized by the formation of clumps of immune cells called granulomas, which can drive chronic inflammation and lead to tissue scarring over time. This can cause damage to organs throughout the body, though lung disease is particularly common, affecting about nine in 10 people with sarcoidosis.
It’s estimated that more than 150,000 people in the U.S. have sarcoidosis, with more than a million people living with the disease around the world. While there is no cure, available care can help to minimize the impact that sarcoidosis symptoms have on daily life, and may also work to slow the disease’s progression.
FSR’s new alliance hopes to foster sharing of information among clinicians to advance new treatment paradigms, as well as create collaborative systems where patients can be rapidly directed toward specialists familiar with their disease.
We are excited to contribute to this new alliance and push the margin forward in understanding and eventually curing sarcoidosis for thousands of patients in Alabama and worldwide.
With such a network, the alliance aims to ensure access to education, clinical trials, and patient support services for sarcoidosis patients in every community. Another goal is to expedite sarcoidosis research through FSR’s funding.
“Alliance members will benefit from innovative resources, sustainable programming, and tools to accelerate treatment, research and the continuum of patient care,” the release stated.
“Since joining the alliance, we have been fostering working collaborations with other clinics in the U.S.,” said Maria Del Pilar Acosta Lara, MD, a member of the Multidisciplinary Sarcoidosis Clinic.
“Our patients share the same barriers as those in other alliance clinics — access to care, a support care network geared toward patients and access to clinical trials,” she added. “This alliance will expand all our efforts to improve the care of sarcoid patients.”