Leadership and Teamwork
Infection Control Practitioner Team
The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
The team of six infection control practitioners (ICPs) at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas, undoubtedly helped save lives nationwide because of their collaboration and perseverance. The Center’s patient population requires extra vigilance to prevent infection because most patients are immunocompromised by their diseases and treatments. When an outbreak of Serratia marcescens hit the facility in 2008, the implications for patient safety extended beyond the walls of the hospital. Through expert sleuthing using epidemiologic, microbiologic and infection control skills as well as multidisciplinary teamwork, the IPs were instrumental in discovering the source of the microbe—a contaminated product—which led to a national recall.