HARRISBURG: The Pennsylvania Patient Safety Authority’s Board of Directors today approved a 15-member panel of infection control experts to help implement Act 52 of 2007. The act was signed into law in July to help reduce and eliminate healthcare-associated infections in Pennsylvania’s hospitals and nursing homes.
The Authority plans to hold the first meeting of the panel in October. Members of the panel had to meet certain criteria to be considered for appointment.
“We are fortunate that high caliber infection control experts have agreed to serve on the panel,” Dr. Ana Pujols-McKee said, chair of the Patient Safety Authority Board of Directors. “Their dedication and success in combating infections is substantial and we are looking forward to working with them to ensure all Pennsylvania hospitals and nursing homes can reduce and eliminate healthcare-associated infections in their facilities.”
At the board meeting the Authority also discussed Act 52 and gave tentative implementation plans regarding reporting for hospitals and nursing homes. The Authority’s Interim Executive Director Mike Doering stressed that due to the other agencies involved with implementation of Act 52, it is difficult to give specific dates, but the Authority does have some timeframes for the hospitals and nursing homes to keep in mind.
“I anticipate that hospitals will be reporting the new infection data to us by next spring and nursing homes will be reporting to us at the earliest next July,” Doering said. “We are working with the other agencies involved to make sure that as soon as the new reporting format is determined, reporting will begin as soon as possible.”
In regard to nursing homes, Doering said the method for receiving the infection data from them will need to be determined and he is looking to the new Advisory panel to help with the implementation process.
“Our new Advisory panel will help ensure we are collecting the right information and see that the implementation process goes as smoothly as possible,” said Doering. “Their expertise will provide the guidance needed to collect the infection data and then to educate facilities to help reduce and eliminate infections.”
The names of the 15 members and their brief biographies are attached along with the responsibilities of the panel and criteria used in selecting candidates. The Authority solicited potential nominees from various healthcare organizations and stakeholders including: the Association of Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC), PA Association of County Affiliated Homes (PACAH), PA Ambulatory Association, PA Association for Not-for-Profit Homes for the Aging, Pennsylvania Medical Society, the Governor’s Office of Healthcare Reform (GOHCR), the Pennsylvania Department of Health, the Pennsylvania Healthcare Cost Containment Council, the Hospital and HealthSystem Association of Pennsylvania (HAP), the
Pittsburgh Regional Healthcare Initiative (PRHI), the Pennsylvania Healthcare Association and the Health Care Improvement Foundation (HCIF).
For more information on the Patient Safety Authority go to www.patientsafetyauthority.org.
*EDITOR’S NOTE: Attached is the list of the Patient Safety Authority’s Healthcare-Associated Infection Advisory Panel with the responsibilities of the panel and criteria used in selecting candidates.
Erick J. Bergquist, MD, PhD
Medical Director for Epidemiology
Indiana Regional Medical Center
- Dr. Bergquist has been a member of an Infection Control Committee since 1975 and is currently the chairman of the Indiana Regional Medical Center Infection Control Committee and co-chair of the Excela Health Infection Control Committee. He has given numerous lectures and conferences on infectious disease topics while a faculty member at Jefferson Medical College. Dr. Bergquist also serves as an Infectious Disease consultant for several healthcare facilities in the Latrobe area.
- Dr. Bergquist was nominated as a Rural Hospital Representative.
Dorothy Borton, RN, BSN, CIC
Infection Control Practitioner
Albert Einstein Healthcare Network
- Ms. Borton has 25 years of infection control experience. She has served
on numerous committees in the Delaware Valley Chapter of APIC where she is
the current past president and chair of the education committee. She has served
on the PHC4 advisory board.
- Ms. Borton was nominated as a Non-Rural Hospital Representative.
Patrick J. Brennan, MD
Chief Medical Officer and Senior Vice President
University of Pennsylvania Health System
Professor of Medicine
- Dr. Brennan has served as the Chief of Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety at Penn from 2001 to 2005. Dr. Brennan oversees Medical Affairs and has recently developed a Center for Evidence Based practice. Dr. Brennan is an infectious disease physician and served as Director of Infection Control for 11 years. He has also served as director of Tuberculosis Control for the city of Philadelphia for seven years. He is a fellow of the Infectious Diseases Society of America and the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America (SHEA). He will become the president of SHEA in 2008.
- Dr. Brennan was nominated as a Non-Rural Hospital Representative.
Kenneth Brubaker, MD
Director of Geriatric Program
Willow Valley Retirement Community
- Dr. Brubaker is the Medical Director of several Nursing Homes, including Willow Valley Retirement Communities, Conestoga View, Maple Farm, and Masonic Village. He is also the Director of the Geriatric Program at Lancaster Hospital and a Geratric Consultant to the Office of Aging in Lancaster County. He is the current president of the PA Medical Directors Association and has authored articles regarding the rights of long term care residents and the quality of care of Nursing Home Patients. Dr. Brubaker has presented lectures on numerous geriatric topics, such as pain management, insomnia, elder abuse, and inappropriate drug use in the elderly.
- Dr. Brubaker was nominated as a representative of Not-for-Profit Nursing Homes.
Susan E. Coffin, MD, MPH
Medical Director, Department of Infection Prevention and Control
The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
- Dr. Coffin is an Associate Scholar at the Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics and a member of the American Board of Pediatric Infectious Diseases. She is a member of the Editorial Board for a number of Infectious Disease publications. Dr. Coffin is an attending on the Clinical Infectious Disease service at CHOP and a member of the teaching faculty. She has published and lectured extensively in the area of pediatric infectious disease.
- Dr. Coffin was nominated as a Non-Rural Hospital Representative.
Joan M. Delovich, BSN, MS
Director of Nursing
Troy Community Hospital
- Ms. Delovich was nominated as a Rural Hospital Representative.
- Ms. Delovich has 30 years of experience in nursing. She is currently the Director of Nursing at a Critical Access Hospital. She has extensive experience in Long Term Care and Home Health, where she has developed and implemented Infection Control Programs. She is active on a number of Professional Advisory Boards and is a Licensed Nursing Home Administrator.
Daniel Haimowitz, MD, FACP, CMD
Medical Director of Geriatric Program
Attleboro Retirement Campus
- Dr. Haimowitz is the Medical Director of several Nursing Homes, including Attleboro Nursing Campus and Arden Courts Assisted Living Facility. He is also Medical Director of the Home Care Advisory Committee for Lower Bucks Hospital and has served on its Infection Control Committee. Dr. Haimowitz also serves as Medical Director for the Delaware County PACE initiative (Program for All-inclusive Care for the Elderly). He has lectured extensively on geriatric issues including, end-of-life decisions, Alzheimer ’s disease and related dementias, depression, medication use and alcohol abuse. He is a member of the Pennsylvania Health Care Association (PHCA) and the Pennsylvania Medical Directors Association.
- Dr. Haimowitz was nominated as a representative of For-Profit Nursing Homes.
Kathleen Hess, RN, MS
Director of Nursing
Regional Staff Development Coordinator
- Ms. Hess was nominated as a representative of For-Profit Nursing Homes.
- Ms. Hess has over 25 years of experience in education, nursing and administration. She has extensive experience in Long Term Care Administration and serves as the Eastern Divisional Educator for 46 Pennsylvania Centers. She has expertise in designing, delivering and evaluating educational programs as well as in strategic planning. In addition, she has coordinated APIC membership for 46 Manor-Care facilities.
Sharon L. Jacobs, RN, MS, CIC
Manager, Infection Prevention and Control
St. Clair Memorial Hospital
President, APIC-Three Rivers/Pittsburgh Chapter
- Ms. Jacobs is a certified infection control prevention and control professional with 30
years of experience. She is the current president of the APIC-Three Rivers/Pittsburgh Chapter and a member of the Pittsburgh Regional Healthcare Initiative. She has participated in the CDC’s National Healthcare Safety Network and in the beta testing of the MRSA module of NHSN. She has participated in research projects in the fields of MRSA and Legionella.
- Ms. Jacobs was nominated as a Non-Rural Hospital Representative.
Emily McCracken, MPH
Hospital Epidemiologist and Director of Infection Control
Hamot Health System
- Ms. McCracken has worked for the Minnesota Department of Health in the division of Acute Disease Investigation and Control, where her main focuses were ongoing foodborne illness surveillance, associated outbreak investigations and a variety of MDH and CDC FoodNet studies. At Hamot Medical Center, where she is the Director of Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiologist, she has implemented strategies to make process changes to increase patient safety and quality of care, including implementing an automated infection surveillance system. She has been invited to speak at numerous national engagements regarding public reporting of healthcare-associated infection and best practices in infection control.
- Ms. McCracken was nominated as a Non-Rural Hospital Representative.
S. Candy Mulholland, RN, MSN
Infection Control Coordinator
Kane Nursing Homes
- Ms. Mulholland has 30 years of experience in Long Term Care Facilities, including years of experience in Infection Control. She is currently the Infection Control Coordinator for the four Allegheny County run Kane Nursing Homes and is a member APIC. She has extensive experience in the surveillance of infections in Long Term Care Facilities and the use of the McGeer criteria used in the identification of LTC infections.
- Ms. Mulholland was nominated as a representative of County Nursing Homes.
Carlene A. Muto, MD, MS
Medical Director Department of Hospital Epidemiology and Infection Control
University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
- Dr. Muto has been a member of the University of Pittsburgh Infectious Diseases Epidemiology Research Unit since 1999. She is board certified in internal medicine and
infectious disease. She chairs the Antibiotic Resistance Task Force of the Society for
Healthcare Epidemiology of America and is co-chair of the Clostridium Difficile Outbreak Committee. Dr. Muto’s research interests include the epidemiology of MRSA and vancomycin-resistant enterococci and identifying ways to halt the nosocomial transmission of resistant organisms.
- Dr. Muto was nominated as a Non-Rural Hospital Representative.
Stephen Ostroff, MD
Bureau of Epidemiology
Pennsylvania Department of Health
- Dr. Ostroff has served as the Deputy Director of the National Center for Infectious Diseases (NCID), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), before joining the
Pennsylvania Department of Health. During his career, he assisted in coordinating emerging infectious disease programs, including bioterrorism, food safety, antimicrobial resistance, and healthcare-associated infections. Dr. Ostroff completed CDC’s Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) training while assigned to the Washington State Department of Health from 1986-1988. He has authored/co-authored more than 50 scientific publications and book chapters, including disease outbreaks in the healthcare setting, has served on numerous advisory boards, and has served as a consultant to the World Bank on public health issues. He is a fellow of the Infectious Disease Society of America and a member of the American Society for Microbiology, American Epidemiological Society, and International Society for Travel Medicine.
- Dr. Ostroff was nominated as a representative of the Department of Health.
Abby Weand, RN
HAI Project Leader
Pennsylvania Health Care Cost Containment Council (PHC4)
- Ms. Weand is a registered nurse researcher and a member of the Health Policy Research
department of PHC4. She participated in the advisory panel of infection control professionals who developed the criteria and guidelines by which facilities submit healthcare acquired infection data to PHC4. She is responsible for interfacing with facilities regarding HAI related questions and provides guidance and interpretation of the HAI collection manual. She has participated in education sessions throughout Pennsylvania during the implementation of the PHC4 HAI collection initiative.
- Ms. Weand was nominated as a representative of PHC4.
Linda Winston, MSN, CIC
Infection Control Officer
Altoona Regional Health System
- Ms. Winston has seven years of experience in Infection Control, is a member of APIC, and maintains Certification in Infection Control (CIC). She is currently the Infection Control Officer for a 300-bed healthcare system where she developed a total house surveillance system. She has developed infection control screening and educational programs and successfully implemented the IHI infection control bundles in her institution. She recently conducted a seminar on active surveillance of Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA).
- Ms. Winston was nominated as a Rural Hospital Representative.
Patient Safety Authority Healthcare-Associated Infection Advisory Panel
Responsibilities of the Advisory Panel
The role of the Advisory Panel will be to provide advice and guidance to the Authority in the implementation of the Healthcare-Associated Infection legislation (Act 52 of 2007). The role of the Advisory Panel includes providing guidance to the Authority and other state agencies on:
- HAI reporting requirements for various healthcare settings
- Plans for analyzing infection-related data from covered healthcare settings
- Evidence-based practices in the control and prevention of HAIs
- Educational needs for various types of facilities and healthcare workers
- Reviewing infection-related Advisory content
- Methods for calculating statewide and national HAI rates
- Reasonable goals for HAI reduction
- Others as identified over time
The Authority anticipates that membership on the Advisory Panel will entail quarterly meetings as well as participation in periodic conference calls.
Criteria Used in Selecting Advisory Panel Candidates
Individuals selected for participation on the Healthcare Associated Infection Control Advisory Panel shall have one of the following qualifications:
1) Primary occupation or profession in the practice and management of infection control.
2) Primary occupation or profession in the application of epidemiology to the study of infectious disease.
3) Currently a member of a Hospital, Nursing Home or Ambulatory Surgical Facility staff with experience and training in infection control, to include at least one of the following;
- The planning, implementation and evaluation of infection prevention and control measures.
- The education of staff about infection risk, prevention and control.
- The development and revision of infection control policies and procedures.
- The management of infection prevention and control activities.
- Provision of consultative services on infection risk assessment, prevention and control strategies.
- Membership on an Infection Control Committee.
- Has published research in the area of infection control and/or infectious disease epidemiology.
Act 52 of 2007 requires that the Advisory Panel include at least one representative from