Kimberly-Clark Takes Education To The Road

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SurgiStrategies spoke with Mark Semmelmayer, communications manager global marketing and communications for Kimberly-Clark Health Care Corporation to get an inside look aboard the Kimberly-Clark HAI Bus.

Can you give me some history on the bus?

The Kimberly-Clark Education Bus is a one-of-a-kind mobile classroom that offers highly topical, accredited clinical education courses to hospitals across America. The bus was created to help promote an increased awareness of healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) and has been touring the nation for three years in a row. Last year, the bus visited 79 locations in the U.S. and Canada, including stops at tradeshows and conferences. The stops occurred in 60 cities in 25 states and one Canadian province.        

There have been some recent additions to the bus. Can you tell me more about those?

The bus now includes new environments, including learning and demo areas and a one-of-a-kind mobile classroom that offers accredited contact hours of continuing education on HAIs to clinicians on-site. The bus features 14 individual, computer-based learning stations. The 30-plus educational programs on-board the bus are continually updated. This year, there are eight to 10 new CE modules, seven new or updated modules for respiratory therapists and four new Excellence in Sterile Processing programs for central services. This year, clinicians are able to view demos and in service presentations on surgical drapes, environmental disinfectants, VAP products, patient warming systems, digestive health products and sterilization wrap.

The bus also have a new three-year commitment to be on the road: The bus has continued to receive positive customer feedback and the CEs issued remain at a high level. The new bus now engages more platforms of Kimberly-Clark Corporation, which will be able to provide clinicians with a more complete service.

What are some of the more popular topics that are covered in the curriculum?

The courses provide clinicians with additional knowledge on critical issues in healthcare, such as sterile processing, OR best practices, HAIs, ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP), surgical site infections (SSIs), environmental disinfection and preventing the spread of airborne infections. Currently, the top three courses on the bus are: MRSA; Time for Action; Fire Safety in the OR and Guess Who’s Coming to Surgery, a program on preventing surgical site infections.

Do facilities get to choose what they want covered, in terms of education?

To have the education bus visit a city, the facility needs to coordinate with their Kimberly-Clark sales representative. Once a date has been set, the facility can work with the sales representative to tailor the bus visit as they’d like, including which CE programs are desired and what the presentation schedule entails. They can even work together to develop content for customized promotional materials to display throughout facility. All the programs on the bus are resident on a server and are always available at the individual learning stations. However, a facility can instruct their personnel to take a specific course or to choose a program from several they would recommend. The large screen monitors on the bus can also be used to project a specific program to all attendees in lieu of utilizing the individual work stations.

How can an ASC benefit from the education bus—any ASC specific content?

Several of the available courses focus specifically on the prevention of surgical site infections, including programs that explore endogenous and exogenous factors that can lead to SSIs. In addition, other courses target issues like unintentional intraoperative hypothermia, enteral feeding, CLABSI and a variety of courses pertinent to instrument decontamination and sterilization.

Who will be on board the bus (clinicians, Kimberly-Clark reps, etc.)?

That would depend on how the facility and their KC rep want to structure the event. Because the courses on the bus are self-contained, generally only their KC representative is in attendance. However, under the right circumstances, KC can bring in our own clinicians and nurse educators if they will add value to the stop. The bus offers the option of letting the facility provide their own clinicians to facilitate a workshop based around a single course, or a demo/in service of a particular product or product type.

When does the tour kick off?

The bus kicked off a new three-year commitment to the tour on March 21, 2011 at Moses Cone HealthSystems in Greensboro, N.C. The 2011 tour will conclude in early December and the 2012 tour willkick off in March 2012.

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