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Melanie Morris, MD, FACS, FASCRS

Professor, Department of Surgery, Division of Gastrointestinal Surgery, University of Alabama at Birmingham | Vice Chair Perioperative Services, Department of Surgery, UAB Hospital | Chief of General Surgery, Birmingham VA Medical Center


Personal Statement

Dr. Morris is a surgeon scientist who is committed to improving the care of all surgical patients and teaching these principles to the next generation. She is an Associate Professor in the Department of Surgery at the University of Alabama (UAB) School Of Medicine, the Vice Chair of Perioperative Services at UAB hospital Co-Chair of the OR Executive Committee for UAB Hospital and Chief of General Surgery at the Birmingham Veteran’s Affairs Hospital. Her expertise is in the area of colorectal surgery with a research focus on health services research, quality improvement, and surgical outcomes, especially in vulnerable populations.  Dr. Morris is committed to training the next generation of surgeons and serves as a mentor on a T32 research fellowship and is the Associate Director of the Veterans Affairs Quality Scholars Program where she currently mentors 2 general surgery residents. She is a clinical advisor for many residents and has been an MSPH clinical mentor, and a DNP clinical mentor.  Dr. Morris has mentored many medical students for both their Scholarly Activity through UAB School of Medicine and through summer research opportunities. She mentors undergraduate students both at UAB and other Alabama colleges through programs such as the Summer Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) which targets underrepresented minority students.  These mentoring relationships have resulted in many abstract submissions with oral presentations at national meetings and 3 mentees have won national awards.  Dr. Morris is passionate about mentoring and has been a routinely invited lecturer on mentoring at the American College of Surgeons Fundamentals of Surgical Research course. 


  • MD, University of Tennessee Health Science Center
  • Resident, Oregon Health Science Center
  • Fellow, University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston

Research Interests

  • Colon and rectal surgery
  • Outcomes and quality improvement research

Recent Publications

  • NIH Funding of Researchers in Surgery: Decreased Career Development Awards Over Time. Journal of Surgical Research.  266:6-12. 2021 10.1016/j.jss.2021.02.053                   
  • Psychosocial Determinants of Readmission after Surgery.  Medical Care.  59:864-871. 2021 10.1097/MLR.0000000000001600  
  • Visual teaching aids improve patient understanding and reduce anxiety prior to a colectomy 2021 10.1016/j.amjsurg.2021.01.029 
  • The impact of an enhanced recovery program (ERP) on the costs of colorectal surgery 2021 10.1016/j.amjsurg.2020.11.034