National Journal and APIC Host Policy Summit on Best Practices in Infection Prevention; Dr. Don Wright, HHS, Keynotes Government Role in Infection Prevention

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U.S. health experts estimate that at any given time, about one in 20 patients develop an infection related to their hospital care. Today, in honor of International Infection Prevention Week (IIPW), National Journal LIVE and the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) are hosting “Spreading Success: Encouraging Best Practices in Infection Prevention."

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Collaboration among the many stakeholders in infection prevention is critical to advancing patient safety, and is why we organized today’s forum.

U.S. health experts estimate that at any given time, about one in 20 patients develop an infection related to their hospital care.

Today, in honor of International Infection Prevention Week (IIPW), National Journal LIVE and the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) are hosting “Spreading Success: Encouraging Best Practices in Infection Prevention." Keynote speaker, Don Wright, MD, MPH, deputy assistant secretary for Healthcare Quality, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will focus on how government agencies are helping to combat healthcare-associated infections (HAIs).

The good news is that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recently reported declines in several infections seen in healthcare facilities.

Timed to occur during the 25th anniversary of IIPW, the policy summit will be attended by more than 200 healthcare professionals, government officials, policy makers and patient advocates, who will explore the impact of healthcare reform efforts in boosting patient safety and quality improvement. It will also examine the unique role of the patient safety professionals known as infection preventionists and their role in implementing programs aimed at reducing or eliminating preventable HAIs.

“Collaboration among the many stakeholders in infection prevention is critical to advancing patient safety, and is why we organized today’s forum,” said Russell Olmsted, MPH, CIC, APIC 2011 president. “Our goal is the elimination of preventable healthcare-associated infections.”

The keynote speaker of the event, Dr. Don Wright, leads the Office of Healthcare Quality within the HHS Office of the Secretary, Office of Public Health and Science, which developed the National Action Plan to Prevent HAIs.

Maggie Fox, managing editor of the National Journal, will moderate a panel of experts who will examine whether public attention, innovative tracking and monitoring programs, and financial incentives, such as value-based purchasing, can fuel continued improvement in combating these kinds of deadly infections. Panelists include:

  •     Denise Cardo, MD, director, Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  •     Linda Greene, RN, MPS, CIC, director of Infection Prevention, Rochester General Health System
  •     Manoj Jain, MD, MPH, medical director, Tennessee’s Quality Improvement Organization
  •     Jonathan Perlin, MD, PhD, MSHA, FACP, FACMI, president, Clinical and Physician Services Group & chief medical officer, Hospital Corporation of America
  •     Jean Rexford, executive director, Connecticut Center for Patient Safety

A recording of this event will be available immediately following the summit at http://www.nationaljournal.com/events/event/65/. For more information on IIPW, APIC or infection prevention, please visit http://www.apic.org.

APIC’s 2011 IIPW efforts are made possible with support from the Signature Sponsor, 3M Health Care, in the form of an unrestricted educational grant.

About healthcare-associated infections (HAIs)
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) estimates that at any given time, about one in every 20 patients develop an infection related to their hospital care. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), HAIs represent the most frequent adverse event in healthcare.

About IIPW
President Ronald Reagan, who proclaimed the third week of October as National Infection Control Week, established IIPW in the U.S. in 1986. IIPW aims to raise awareness about infection prevention and commemorates the work of healthcare professionals and administrators, legislators and consumers for their commitment to reducing infection worldwide. Since its creation, APIC has spearheaded the annual effort to recognize IIPW globally; it is now formally recognized in many areas around the world including the U.S., Australia, the United Kingdom, the Middle East and Southeast Asia.

About APIC
APIC’s mission is to improve health and patient safety by reducing risks of infection and other adverse outcomes. The association’s more than 14,000 members direct infection prevention programs that save lives and improve the bottom line for hospitals and other healthcare facilities around the globe. APIC advances its mission through education, research, collaboration, practice guidance, public policy and credentialing. Visit APIC online at http://www.apic.org. For consumer-related information, visit http://www.preventinfection.org. Follow us on Twitter: http://twitter.com/apic. For IIPW, please use the Twitter hashtags: #IIPW2011 and #spreadsuccess.

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Liz Garman
APIC
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