Kimberly-Clark Education Bus Hits the Road: Q&A With Mark Semmelmayer of Kimberly-Clark

The Kimblery-Clark Education Bus is a mobile classroom that brings accredited CE on healthcare-associated infections and other critical healthcare issues to cities across North America. Last year, the bus visited 79 locations in the United States and Canada, visiting 60 cities in 25 states and one Canadian province. This year, the bus features new learning and demo areas and accredited CE on HAIs to clinicians on-site. Mark Semmelmayer, communications manager of global marketing and communications for Kimberly-Clark Corp. discusses the 2011 Education Bus and the objectives for its tour.


Q: What's new with this year's Education Bus and why were these new features added?


Mark Semmelmayer: This year, the bus includes new environments, including learning and demo areas. The bus also offers a one-of-a-kind mobile classroom that offers accredited CE on HAIs to clinicians on-site. These new features were added to help promote an increased awareness of HAIs and to maintain a variety of accredited education that is able to educate healthcare providers with critical insights and information on today's important clinical issues. Lastly, the bus has just signed a new three-year commitment to be on the road.


Q: What were some of top areas identified by attendees during last year's tour that they wanted improved?


MS: The capability of seeing product in-services/demos and the inclusion of more central services/sterile processing related educational programs.


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Q: What steps did you take to address the suggested areas of improvement?


MS: The 2011 Bus is an all-new model that features an area specifically designed to allow for product demo. Four of our popular Excellence in Sterile Processing programs were converted from their traditional workbook format to digital video format so they could be taken on the Bus.


Q: What do you anticipate as some of the top issues/topics you will hear about this year from attendees?


Kimberly-Clark is anticipating that the top issues we will hear about this year are clinicians looking for strategies to help manage HAIs, ventilator-associated pneumonia and surgical site infections, plus general OR best practices and preventing the spread of airborne infections.


Q: What were a few great stories you heard during last year's tour of how attendees were tackling HAIs?

MS: One story that comes to mind was St. Luke's Health System in Idaho and IHC in Utah. Both hospitals were offered an invitation to join the newly formed Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology chapter in Utah after inviting Rouett Abouzelof, the infection control nurse at Primary Children's Medical Center, SLC, Utah, to visit the Bus. The infection control nurse was so impressed with the educational offerings she considered having a representative from their hospital present some of the educational offerings at an APIC meeting in the future. The infection control nurse even sent information about the Bus and Kimberly-Clark's educational programs to all of the infection control nurses in Utah.


Another great story was the one about David Kay, manager, surgical center, Utah Valley Regional Medical Center, who is also the president of a nursing group of more than 100 nurses and was so impressed after attending an educational program on the Bus that he requested a list of Kimberly-Clark educational programs for presentation at one of their next meetings.


Q: With a three-year commitment to have the Education Bus on the road, what do you hope to achieve during that time?


MS: Kimberly-Clark hopes to continue to offer updated CE programs, to continue to incorporate more of Kimberly-Clark's platforms into the Bus and to look for visit strategies that will increase HAI awareness, help facilities empower their employees to take action and provide highly topical, accredited clinical education courses to hospitals across America.


Learn more about Kimberly-Clark Education Tour.


Read Related Articles on HAI Prevention:

Environmental Cleaning and Disinfection: What Infection Preventionists Need to Know

Amerinet Announces Toolkit and Educational Resources on Healthcare Associated Infections

Basics of Cleaning, Disinfection and Sterilization of Instruments

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