APIC and JCAHO Examine Preparedness of Healthcare Organizations for Bioterrorism and Emerging Pathogens at Upcoming National Conference

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) and the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) will examine the effective preparedness of healthcare organizations for bioterrorist incidents and emerging pathogens at their national conference, Nov. 17-18, 2003 at the Hotel Intercontinental in Chicago.

According to APIC president Barbara M. Soule, RN, MPA, CIC, a featured speaker at the conference, "Although infection control and bioterrorism are major concerns for healthcare organizations, a recent GAO report suggests that many hospitals lack the capacity to respond to large-scale disease outbreaks and disasters. It is imperative that we address these issues in a meaningful and timely manner."

The conference's key topics will include:

-- Preparedness for bioterrorism, pandemics, and emerging pathogens

-- Lessons learned from SARS, HIV/AIDS, and West Nile Virus incidents

-- Redefining the roles and skills of infection control professionals

-- Pros and cons of data-driven surveillance

-- Understanding how infection control programs influence the bottom line

The conference will also highlight the 2004 National Patient Safety Goals and the proposed infection control standards developed with the participation of the Joint Commission's Infection Control Expert Panel. This initiative includes APIC's representative, Georgia P. Dash, RN, MS, CIC.

For healthcare professionals specifically interested in the Joint Commission's proposed infection control standards, an optional infection control post-conference workshop is being offered. Attendees to both the post-conference and the conference will receive a $75 discount at registration.

Complete program information, conference agenda and brochure are available by calling customer service at (877) 223-6866.

APIC is a multidisciplinary, voluntary, international organization with more than 10,000 members. APIC promotes wellness and prevents illness and infection worldwide by advancing healthcare epidemiology through education, collaboration, research, practice, and credentialing. For more information, visit the APIC Web site at www.apic.org

Source: APIC

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