APIC Urges States to Proclaim International Infection Prevention Week

To bring greater attention to the critical need to protect patients and the public from the risk of infection, the Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology (APIC) is urging every state to recognize International Infection Prevention Week (IIPW) Oct. 19-25, 2008. APIC said its goal is to have all 50 states and Congress issue proclamations recognizing IIPW 2008.

International Infection Prevention Week was established in 1986 by President Ronald Reagan who proclaimed the third week in October as National Infection Control Week and called all "federal, state, and local government agencies, health organizations, communications, media, and people" to take part in educational activities and programs during this designated week.

Since its creation, APIC has continued the tradition of recognizing IIPW. This year's commemorative ceremony at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., on Oct. 22 will feature a presentation on the federal government's infection prevention plan by Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Don Wright, MD, MPH.

With the theme of "Infection Prevention Is Everyone's Business," this year's events will highlight the work of infection preventionists throughout the world. Infection preventionists direct interventions that protect patients from health care-associated infections (HAIs) in clinical and other settings. They work with clinicians and administrators to improve patient and systems-level outcomes and reduce HAIs and related adverse events.

"IIPW presents an opportunity to spread the word about infection prevention and to educate important audiences--policy-makers, consumers, health care leaders, and advocacy groups--about the need for well-supported infection prevention departments," said Kathy L. Warye, APIC CEO. "We ask health care leaders to join with us in making infection prevention a priority--from the C-suite to the bedside."

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