December 19, 2007 - The Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) announced yesterday a series of new educational initiatives aimed at eliminating healthcare-associated infections (HAIs), which include Clostridium difficile-associated disease and the three infections that the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) have classified as preventable occurrences: catheter-associated urinary tract infections (UTIs), central line catheter-associated blood stream infections, and mediastinitis (a deep infection following coronary artery bypass surgery).
The APIC programs will provide a comprehensive package of education, research and guidance for infection prevention and control professionals.
“As the nation’s largest infection prevention organization, we are leading an effort to eradicate these infections,” said Kathy L. Warye, chief executive officer of APIC. “The Targeting Zero Campaign is intended to accelerate both learning and the delivery of practical tools for infection prevention professionals.”
Launching in January 2008, APIC’s program to address C. difficile will include a prevalence study to gain a better understanding of the scope of the problem. C. difficile is a bacterium that causes diarrhea and more serious intestinal conditions such as colitis. Over the past two years, a new strain of C. difficile has caused hospital outbreaks in several states.
APIC also intends to develop a guide to the elimination of C. difficile, including strategies for controlling transmission; a Webinar series, and a conference in the fall of 2008, featuring results of the prevalence study, along with the latest science, epidemiology and best practices.
To help infection prevention and control professionals address new changes to the CMS regulations which eliminate or reduce payments for three hospital-acquired infections, APIC will offer comprehensive educational programs on each of the three infections, using nationally recognized clinicians to discuss elimination strategies. APIC will also develop an elimination guide with practical implementation strategies for each infection.
For more information: www.apic.org