Day 4 APIC Infection Control Conference and Training Summit

posted Jul 1, 2011, 8:55 AM by Todd Fox   [ updated Sep 24, 2016, 8:48 AM ]

It was sad to see the close of the APIC Annual Conference!  There was so much great networking going on and so many infection control ideas shared!  I think that all the attending infection preventionists and companies supplying hygiene products benefited greatly from the effectively organized vendor show and meetings.  The following are some notes from the last leg of continuing education and other courses. 

The Professional Development Workshop on Risk Assessments (Presenters Terrie Lee, RN, MS, MPH, CIC; Karen Anderson, MT, MPHc, CIC; Amy Richmond, RN, BSN, MHS, CIC; and Barbara Russell, MPH, RN, CIC, ACRN) was a very interesting topic for infection preventionists and hospital administration.  The following were notes from that session:


For Risk Assessments dealing with infection control, it is important to:

                Set a Goal and objectives

                Have a strategy to reach objectives

                Introduce new tools

                Have a Method of Evaluation


The session was helpful because infection control topics were discussed and then the tables (teams) were given time to break out and discuss ideas.  These breakout sessions resulted in effective plans to achieve higher levels of hygiene in hospitals, clinics and other types or attending organizations.


In other meetings, Hand hygiene has been a frequently discussed issue with the national average in facilities being stated to be around 45% compliant… That is SO low!  How can we expect to maintain a clean environment if no one is washing?  How can we start asking hospital visitors to be more compliant with hygiene when the health staff is not willing?  The APIC show seemed to effectively address this- now it’s up to infection control professionals to implement the learned strategies to improve compliance numbers.


Another interesting topic was the use of the Standard Precautions produced by the CDC.  It was stressed that awareness and visibility for the standard precautions needed to be increased in order for changes to be made in the disease and illness prevention arena.  Some ideas of increased exposure included buying standard precautions posters and reminder sheets and hanging in break areas (lunch rooms, nursing stations, meeting rooms and other areas with a high frequency of traffic).  Standard Precaution reminder sheets, stickers and labels have been used for quite some time but they need to be used more in line with the organization’s overall risk management program.


The last presentation attended by OUTFOX was the most attended (from our experience).  The Concurrent Session : Thinking Outside the Box: A Creative Approach to Redesigning Your Infection Prevention Program (Debbie Hurst, RN, BSN, CIC) told a story about how Debbie started in a hospital and transformed her infection program to the present state (including company management restructure over Infection Control and creation of office space).   Some great takeaways from Debbie’s story were “Looking at old problems in new ways.” Meaning, we have been dealing with infection, disease and illness for a long time, but how can we use new tools, ideas and strategies to get better results? 


Some ideas given were:

- make sure to ask for what you need, don't assume hospital administration knows you need it.

- you need an infection program- NOT just a person over infection control

- you need dedicated resources- not part time resources from other departments

- align with the strategic plan and initiatives for the hospital and not create isolated agendas

- remember that small budgets can be good sources for innovation- get creative!

- develop a culture of infection control and risk management- it gets everyone involved

- use per diem staff when needed

The above featured products were interesting.  We investigated anti-microbial dressings, hand sanitizers that have per use clicks, and then there were a large number of automatic hand washing verifiers.  They seem to be the future.  Also part of the new product group includes UV technology (although it has been around for years).  It is catching on more and more in the infection control industry.  Also interesting was the Red Bag company.  They take hospital waste and reduce it material that can be safely stored.  I took a picture of their process to reduce the infectious and dangerous materials.  See pictures below:
Overall, the APIC show was an awesome experience for the OUTFOX Prevention team.  We look forward to visiting the APIC 2012 in San Antonio and becoming a partner with the APIC organization.  Within the year we are looking to feature and resell many of the innovative products that we were introduced to.  We also look forward to the additional innovations that will be released over the year so we can continually OUTFOX illness and disease!  Thanks for the read!

Cast your vote and choose OUTFOX when you have infection program needs or would like to teach hygiene principles more effectively!

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