World MRSA Day Kickoff Event and Global MRSA Summit Live Broadcast Slated for October 1

Dr. Jorge Parada, associate professor, infectious disease at Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine, will be joined by Dr. William Jarvis, formerly of the CDC, on Oct. 1 World MRSA Day at Loyola.

Fifty years ago this October, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) emerged into the world and is now a major global epidemic and the most common cause of healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) in most U.S. healthcare facilities.

"The MRSA pandemic continues to be a major public health threat and crisis along with other antimicrobial- resistant pathogens and must become a top political priority worldwide," says Jeanine Thomas, founder of MRSA Survivors Network and World MRSA Day.

The third annual World MRSA Day kickoff event and Global MRSA Summit at Loyola University Stritch of Medicine will be held on Oct. 1, 2011 in Maywood, Ill. and will broadcast live via web stream on MRSA Survivors Networks website and the World MRSA Day website.

The program begins at 10:30 a.m. CT with a remembrance ceremony and prayer by Rev. Henry Soles, senior chaplain for the Chicago Bulls basketball team to remember and honor all of those who have lost their lives to MRSA around the world.

The event is open to the public with free parking.

Sponsors of the event are Tec Labs, Roche, Pfizer, Loyola University Health System and media sponsor NBC Chicago.

The keynote speaker is Dr. William R. Jarvis, president of Jason & Jarvis Associates LLC, a MRSA expert and formerly with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Rob Stafford, anchor of the NBC Chicago evening news and contributing correspondent for NBC Dateline, is the emcee.

Dr. Jorge Parada, associate professor of medicine and an infectious disease specialist at Loyola University Health System, also will be presenting along with Dr. Michael Pulia. MRSA survivors and their family members will speak and share their personal stories. Music is provided by Tracy Jackson of the King of Glory Tabernacle Choir. After the awards ceremony there will be a 30-minute seminar for those in the community who want to learn more about MRSA, how to get involved, raise awareness and become a MRSA Survivors Champion in their own community.

Monica E. Oduber, an artist from Aruba, has created the first MRSA painting Starseed to draw attention to the MRSA epidemic and will exhibit several of her paintings during the Oct. 1, 2011 event and hopes other artists around the world will become inspired.

The 2011 global theme is The MRSA Epidemic A Call to Action brings critical attention to the public health crisis. MRSA Survivors Network urgently pleas for the World Health Organization (WHO), Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to finally recognize the MRSA pandemic and set up a worldwide surveillance program and strongly recommend pro-active implementation of ADI to control MRSA in healthcare facilities.

MRSA Survivors Network was among the first to raise the alarm about the MRSA epidemic in the United States and launched its global MRSA awareness campaign by founding and organizing the Chicago World MRSA Day kickoff event in 2009. To help raise awareness, MRSA Survivors Network has partnered with True Productions on the first non-profit public service announcements for general MRSA awareness with Rob Stafford of NBC Chicago; they are airing on NBC Chicago stations and also can be viewed on MRSA Survivors Networks YouTube channel. Downloadable posters, web banners and a brochure are available at the World MRSA Day website.

MRSA Survivors Network also announces its 2011 awards and will honor recipients during the Oct. 1 event; Barry M. Farr MD, of the University of Virginia, isthe  recipient of the Humanitarian Award for his outstanding work, dedication and service to raising awareness and preventing MRSA infections. The  Man of the Year award recipient is Loren G. Miller, MD, MPH, associate professor of medicine at David Geffen School of Medicine and investigator of CA-MRSA treatment and prevention at the Los Angeles BioMedical Research Institute at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. The Woman of the Year is Illinois state Rep. Patti Bellock, who is being honored for her groundbreaking MRSA legislation and awareness.

The Public Service award is presented to the Veterans Administration Health System for their exemplary dedication to patient safety in preventing MRSA infections. Loyola University Health System will receive the Hospital Leader Award for its dedication in reducing MRSA infections using ADI.

Since 2007, Loyola University Medical Center has been among the first hospitals in the nation to initiate several aggressive strategies to detect and reduce MRSA, including screening hospital patients and offering a clinic, dedicated to treating MRSA. "Loyolas effort to control MRSA has been recognized and lauded at national and international infectious disease meetings," says Jorge Parada, medical director of the infection control program.

World MRSA Awareness Month, October - Times Square, New York City World MRSA Day, October 2 and World MRSA Awareness Month is an opportunity for people worldwide to unite in the fight against MRSA, healthcare-acquired infections and antimicrobial resistance while increasing awareness, improving education, and emphasizing the importance of prevention through screening.