May 10, 2024

Dransfield named interim chair of the Department of Medicine

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Dr. Mark DransfieldMark Dransfield, M.D., has been named interim chair of the UAB Department of Medicine, effective Sept. 1, 2024. Dransfield is a professor of Medicine and director of the Division of Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care Medicine. He also holds the Ben Vaughan Branscomb Chair of Medicine in Respiratory Disease.

Dransfield assumes the interim chair role upon the departure of Seth Landefeld, M.D. Landefeld will step down as chair after leading the Department of Medicine for 12 years to become a fellow at Stanford University’s Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, where he will work to address the crisis in American primary care. To enable a smooth transition for the department, Dransfield will work closely with Landefeld and begin assuming key responsibilities on June 1, 2024.

“I am honored and humbled to be asked to serve as interim chair for the Department of Medicine, which is an important transitional role for both the department and the school," said Dransfield. "Seth has assembled an outstanding leadership team and I look forward to working with them to continue to advance our missions throughout the interim period. I am also very happy to have several months of overlap with Seth to learn from him and to ensure a smooth transition."

A graduate of the UNC School of Medicine, Dransfield trained in medicine and in pulmonary and critical care medicine at UAB, where he served as chief fellow. He joined the UAB faculty in 2003 and earned the rank of full professor in 2016. He became division director in August 2021.

Dransfield is a nationally renowned expert in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and served as the medical director of the UAB Lung Health Center from 2009 to 2023. He also led the successful CMS Bundled Payments for Care Improvement (BPCI) initiative for COPD from 2015-2019 and served as medical director of Pulmonary Rehabilitation for more than 10 years.

An elected member of the American Society for Clinical Investigation, Dransfield has been the principal investigator for multiple clinical trials and observational studies sponsored by the National Institutes of Health, Department of Defense, and American Lung Association. He also chairs the Lancet Commission on COPD, an international consortium whose objective is to set the course to eradicate the disease, and serves on the board of directors of the COPD Foundation.

Dransfield has published over 300 research papers and serves as editor-in-chief of COPD: Journal of the COPD Foundation and on the editorial board of the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

A timeline for a national search for a permanent chair for the Department of Medicine will be announced later this year.

“I wish Dr. Dransfield all the best in this important interim role,” said Anupam Agarwal, M.D., senior vice president for Medicine and dean of the Heersink School of Medicine. “His commitment to scientific innovation, clinical excellence, dedicated mentorship, and academic leadership will be critical assets in sustaining the vitality and distinction of our Department of Medicine during this period of transition.”