Continuous Quality Improvement

Workshops - 2.5 hours

1403 - Demystifying Dialysis: Infection Prevention in a Not-So-Foreign Land

Thursday, June 15
2:15 PM - 4:45 PM
Location: Oregon Convention Center, Oregon Ballroom 201

The world of dialysis care and infection prevention strikes fear into the hearts of infection preventionists across facility types. Many dialysis units in acute care hospitals are run through a contract with a dialysis corporation, which makes communicating, following hospital infection prevention policies and procedures, and completing practice observations in these units increasingly difficult. As patient care continues to extend into the outpatient environment, many hospitals are acquiring outpatient dialysis clinics that have oversight by infection preventionists. Outpatient dialysis facilities are the increasing focus of hepatitis C transmissions. During this session, the presenters will demystify the dialysis setting, focusing on the most important aspects of infection prevention. Examples of outbreaks in the dialysis setting will be provided, as well as how infection prevention tools available through the CDC can prevent transmission of infections. In addition, interactive stations will be set up to describe how to complete infection prevention audits of practice and important things to focus on in a dialysis clinic. Upon completion, infection preventionists will feel empowered to interact with dialysis units and staff to prevent infections and improve outcomes.

Learning Objectives:

Nicole Gualandi

Nurse Consultant
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Atlanta, Georgia

Nicole Gualandi is a nurse consultant with the Prevention and Response Branch (PRB) of the Division of Healthcare Quality and Promotion (DHQP) and has worked at CDC since April 2013. Nicole’s current work includes coordination of dialysis infection prevention projects and consultation on dialysis outbreaks. Nicole holds a certification in infection control (CIC) and is an active committee member for the Association for Professionals in Infection Control (APIC), currently serving on the annual conference committee. Prior to her work at CDC, Nicole served as an epidemiologist for the Illinois Department of Public Health and as an infection preventionist at a large academic medical center.


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Sally Hess

Infection Prevention Consultant
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention-Dialysis team
Richmond, Vermont

Sally Hess, BS, MPH, CIC. Infection Prevention Consultant, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention-Dialysis team.


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Barbara Dommert-Breckler

Quality Improvement Director Network 16 and 18
Northwest Renal Network
Seattle, Washington


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Susan M. McGann

Infection Preventionist
Lawrence Memorial Hospital
Lawrence, Kansas

Susan McGann is currently the sole Infection Prevention practitioner at Lawrence Memorial Hospital in Lawrence, Kansas. Lawrence Memorial is a 173-bed community hospital with 17 clinics in the region. She partners with providers and staff across the organization to continuously focus infection prevention goals to improve patient, employee and visitor safety. She received her BSN from Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois and MBA from Baker College in Flint, Michigan. She is Board Certified in Infection Prevention and Control. She has been a nurse for 39 years and has over 7 years of experience as an infection preventionist. She was awarded APIC’s Chapter Leadership Award in June of 2016.


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1403 - Demystifying Dialysis: Infection Prevention in a Not-So-Foreign Land

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