Meet the Heroes - Bertha “Byrdi” Gonzales


Bertha “Byrdi” Gonzales Campaign for Raising Awareness

Bertha “Byrdi” Gonzales, LVN
Chistus Spohn Alice Hospital
Alice, TX

In an effort to find a new and creative way to teach infection prevention and control issues, Bertha “Byrdi” Gonzalez introduced a glamorous crocodile named, Hannah as the new spokesperson for infection prevention to the Chistus Spohn Alice Hospital staff. Hannah made her debut in 2004 when Byrdi donned the crocodile suit to kick off the International Infection Prevention Week ceremony within the hospital. At first Hannah stayed close to the hospital where she promoted infection prevention and control and emphasized the importance of hand hygiene among staff. However, due to a high rate in pediatric community acquired-MRSA within the area, Hannah began to take her campaign for clean hands into the local schools of Alice, Texas in September 2005. Since Hannahs’ début in her community, the number of reported community acquired -MRSA cases declined from 141 in 2005 to 121 in 2006. Only 36 cases were reported in the first half of 2007.