A Bug in Your Ear

News for APIC River Region Chapter Members

APRIL 2004



•  The March 19 th meeting was held at Landry's in Henderson , beginning at 11:00 a.m. with 15 members and 3 visitors.

•  Sheila Reagan welcomed members, new members and guests to the meeting.

•  No members were recognized for first-time certification.

•  Lena Hackney prepared and provided the treasurer's Report. A copy is available upon request.

•  The Legislative Report included information on upcoming bills relating to public reporting of infection rates. Keep your eyes open for these bills, as we will need to respond through the Louisiana Hospital Association to ensure our hospitals are represented during the legislative sessions.


•  Wayne Vizzini from BioSystems hosted the vendor presentation and discussed the company's Sharps Management Program.

•  A contract with the company includes installation of sharps container holders, pick-up of filled sharps containers replaced with clean sharps container, disposal of all sharps, and cleaning and recycling of sharps containers.

•  This process decreases the amount of waste generated by your facility because the sharps ontainers are not disposed of, but instead recycled.

•  Exposure to contaminated sharps is also reduced because the staff are no longer responsible for changing sharps containers when filled.

•  The sharps containers used by the company are generally larger and therefore do not reach fill level as quickly - this also reduces the risk of expose to contaminated sharp in an overfilled container.

*BioSystems is currently building a new reprocessing plant in Reserve and is available for facility audits. ontact Wayne at 1-800-756-8911.


•  Our very own Julie Savoy was our educational presenter for this meeting

•  Julie was an Infection Control Professional at Lafayette General and a very active member of our chapter. Julie is now a practicing lawyer with the Gachassin Law Firm in Lafayette , specializing as a defense attorney for Medical Malpractice – way to go Julie!

•  Julie served at both the local level as Chapter President in 1987 and at the National level as Governmental Affairs Chairperson in 1997 and 1998.

•  Julie's presentation included legal aspects of infection control as well as information on acting as an expert witness.

•  Thanks for a job well done and good luck with your new career.  


•  Annual Fit-Testing - Several questions have been raised concerning annual respirator fit testing. Here are some clarifications.

•  Annual fit testing has been mandated by OSHA and is to be completed by July 1, 2004 .

•  All employees who are expected to enter the room of a patient in Airborne Isolation and use an N-95 particulate respirator must undergo initial fit-testing and annual fit-testing thereafter.

•  A medical screening must be performed on all employees undergoing fit testing.

•  A question concerning the length of time for keeping sterilization records was brought to the attention of members. It was suggested that records be kept for at least five years unless specified by a regulatory agency.



•  The May 21 will be held at Café Margeaux in Lake Charles .

•  Jerry Pierrottie, with Louisiana Safety United, L.L.C. will be our speaker. Jerry is the Safety Manager at Arch Chemicals.

•  Jerry will be presenting information on complying with the OSHA Respirator Hygiene Regulation (TB Mask Fitting).

•  This will be a great time for you to get all your questions answered by an industry expert.



•  July 16 – Annual Chapter Retreat to be held at Landry's in Henderson . Presentations from Chapter members who attended National Conference will be provided.

•  If you plan on attending the National APIC conference and are interested in presenting please let Connie DeLeo know as soon as possible.

•  September 17 - meeting will be held at Woman's Hospital in Baton Rouge , with Dr. Kenny Cole presenting information on recommended antibiotic treatments for infections. The location will be announced at a later date.

•  November 19 - meeting will be held at Landry's in Henderson or Fazio's with the annual presentation from the Office of Public Health.

•  December 10 - annual end-of-year Board meeting will be held at Landry's in Henderson .




•  The Board agreed to another Joint Conference with the New Orleans Chapter with suggestions for topics to include:

•  JCAHO Patient Safety Goals

•  Resistant organisms, controlling the spread and treatment options

•  New techniques in disinfection and sterilization

•  Suggestions were sent to the New Orleans chapter for review and input.

•  If you are interested in assisting with this conference please contact Dixie Fontenot or Sheila Reagan.