College of Pharmacy Hosts Middle Tennessee Antimicrobal Stewardship Symposium

2nd Annual Middle Tennessee Antimicrobial Stewardship Symposium at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee, January 26, 2018.

Dr. Montgomery Williams, associate professor of pharmacy practice, Dr. Shaefer Spires, assistant professor with Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and Heather Spilburg, M.Ed., continuing education coordinator in the College of Pharmacy, developed and planned the Second Annual Middle Tennessee Antimicrobial Stewardship Symposium held in Belmont’s Janet Ayers Conference Room on Friday, January 26.

The symposium was attended by more than 100 healthcare professionals from multiple disciplines including pharmacists, physicians, nurses and those involved with infection prevention and patient safety and quality. Several alumni, preceptors and Belmont faculty were in attendance, as well. Williams said, “It is enlivening to be able to host an event where healthcare professionals can come together to discuss an issue that they are passionate about and leave feeling invigorated to make changes to improve patient care. Our vision of creating a forum for stewardship personnel to share challenges and ideas has grown into a regional event that attracts like-minded professionals to learn from each other as well as our panel speakers. As a Belmont faculty, it is a privilege to host this event at our College and further connect the school to the practice of pharmacy in our area.”

2nd Annual Middle Tennessee Antimicrobial Stewardship Symposium at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee, January 26, 2018.Morning sessions featured a lineup of experts in antimicrobial stewardship. These included Christopher Evans, PharmD, BCPS, HAI Pharmacist, Tennessee Department of Health Healthcare Associated Infections and Antimicrobial Resistance Program, George Nelson, MD, assistant professor of medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and Libby Dodds Ashley, PharmD, MHS, FCCP, BCPS(AQ-ID), instructor, Department of Medicine, Infectious Diseases, Duke University, Duke Antimicrobial Stewardship Outreach Network (DASON). The morning’s keynote speaker was CAPT Arjun Srinivasan, MD, associate director, Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, who gave an update on national activities regarding antimicrobial stewardship.

During the afternoon, participants attended workshop sessions led by pharmacists, physicians and nurses, allowing them the opportunity to discuss topics in a small group format. Some of these topics included joint commission requirements, molecular susceptibility, procalcitonin, and nursing involvement in antimicrobial stewardship. Healthcare facilities across the nation are recognizing the benefit of developing and maintaining evidence-based antimicrobial stewardship programs because of their ability to improve patient safety and lower adverse outcomes such as Clostridium difficile and infections from antimicrobial resistant bacteria.  This symposium brought together key stakeholders and practitioners to learn about this topic and discuss ways to work together as a medical community to improve appropriate antimicrobial use and mitigate these risks.

Spires said of the event, “The 2nd Annual Middle Tennessee Antimicrobial Stewardship (AS) symposium was an astounding success. Our vision was to bring respective leaders in AS from hospitals across the state (and beyond) who are on the front lines practicing AS together, for networking, collaboration and to hear nationally and internationally recognized experts.  Our registration almost doubled from last year and included leaders from three other states including Tennessee. We were honored with informative talks and captivated by the CDC’s CAPT. Arjun Srinivasan as our keynote speaker.”

The College of Pharmacy plans to continue the Symposium as an annual event.

Belmont Occupational Therapy Students Create Ride-Along Cars for Local Children

Maseline Harcrow poses with some of the ride-along carsA group of 34 Occupational Therapy Doctoral students from Belmont University met at Permobil, leader in the rehabilitation power wheelchair industry, to collaborate with representatives and students and faculty members from Vanderbilt’s School of Engineering to adapt ride–on cars for children with mobility impairment and their families. The event, hosted by Associate Professor of OT Dr. Teresa Plummer through the organization Go Baby Go, showcased the importance of self-initiated mobility in early development and the need for greater mobility options for children living for disabilities.

Volunteers were divided into teams, each team serving the unique needs of one pediatric client. Ride–on cars were rewired to eliminate the use of the foot pedal and were outfitted with a big red “GO” button in the center of the steering wheel. The plastic seats were redesigned and furnished with necessary head and lateral supports using foam, PVC pipe and other materials. Each client left with a one-of-a-kind car and a big smile.

Students work on the ride-along cars.Participant and Belmont OT student Madeline Harcrow said, “This experience proved beneficial to my education and future as a clinician. All are deserving of play, joy, self-expression, companionship and new learning, and I love that this truth drives the work of our profession. The energy in the room was undeniable and unwavering – evidence of a job well done by all.”

For a video from the event, click here.

College of Health Sciences and Nursing Hosts Visiting Professor Dr. Amanda Phelan

Dr. Phelan spends time with students in the Inman Health Science Building.The College of Health Sciences and Nursing recently hosted Visiting Professor Dr. Amanda Phelan, associate professor and associate dean for global engagement for the School of Nursing, Midwifery & Health Systems at the University College Dublin (UCD). Phelan also serves as the co-director for the National Centre for the Protection of Older People at UCD.

While on campus, Phelan presented on nursing education, health care and public health systems in the Republic of Ireland. She met with students and faculty interested in international collaboration and scholarship and discussed special challenges associated with the Republic’s aging population, as well as her own research in the area of elder abuse and protection.

Phelan provided an overview of Sláintecare, a newly proposed model of care for Irish citizens.  Said to be a radical transformation from traditional models, Sláintecare is designed to shift care out of hospitals and into the primary care, community setting.

Phelan will be working with Belmont students participating in the upcoming Public Health and Public Health Nursing Maymester trip.