Our CPSC Team

The UAB Center for Palliative and Supportive Care utilizes a team approach, blending the best of medicine, nursing, psychology, pastoral care, nutrition and complementary therapies to create a care plan that meets the holistic needs of patients and families.

Below is a listing of our faculty and staff.


Rodney O.Tucker, MD, MMM
Director, UAB Center for Palliative and Supportive Care
Chief Experience Officer - UAB Medicine

Marie Bakitas, DNSc, APRN, NP-C, AOCN, ACHPN, FAAN
Associate Director, UAB Center for Palliative and Supportive Care
Professor of Nursing

Faculty and Staff  

Dilip Babu, MD
Clinical Assistant Professor

Amanda Baker, CRNP
Nurse Practitioner

Cindy Baker, MD
Assistant Professor
Medical Director Alacare Hospice

Donna Bearden, MD
 Assistant Professor

Michael Barnett, MD, MS
Assistant Professor

Megann Bates Cain
Director of Development 

Jennifer Courtney, MD
Clinical Assistant Professor

Kellie Flood, MD
Associate Professor

Melanie Farrell, MD
Assistant Professor

Vicki Herring, CAP
Program Administrator II

Heather L. Herrington, MD
Associate Professor

Jennifer Hicks, MSHA, MBA
Program Director

John Holcombe, MD
Clinical Assistant Professor

M. Garrett Hurst, MD
Assistant Professor

Stephen Howell, DNP, ANP-BC, ACHPN
Lead Nurse Practitioner

Elizabeth Kvale, MD
Associate Professor

Eddie Mathews, MD
Assistant Professor -
Hospitalist Medicine

Jessica Merlin, MD, MBA
Assistant Professor

Ashley Nichols, MD
Assistant Professor
Medical Director,
Palliative and Comfort Care Unit

Jackie Palmore, RN, BSN, CHPN
Palliative Care Coordinator

Sam Perna, DO
Assistant Professor
Medical Director
Palliative and Supportive Care,
Children's of Alabama

Neal Steil, MD
Assistant Professor

 Keith Swetz, MD, MA, FACP, FAAHPM
Associate Professor
Section Chief & Medical Director -
Palliative Care, Birmingham VA Medical Center

Eric Walker, PA-C
Physician Assistant