Message from the Director

Welcome to the website for the Alabama Regional Center (ARC) for Infection Prevention and Control (IPC)! I’m excited to be working with a diverse team of IPC experts from across the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) and others across the state to assist the Alabama Department of Public Health’s (ADPH) Infectious Disease and Outbreaks Division (ID&O) in strengthening Alabama’s capacity to prevent, control, and manage infectious disease outbreaks.

Despite the many improvements in public health and medicine over the past century, the evolving Coronavirus pandemic has proven emerging and reemerging infectious diseases are and will remain a challenge for years to come. Healthcare and public health systems must be prepared to respond to a variety of infectious disease outbreaks caused by waterborne, vector-borne, and foodborne diseases as well as seasonal infectious diseases like influenza and RSV. In addition, healthcare facilities are constantly working to monitor and prevent healthcare associated infections (HAIs), one of the top 10 causes of death in the United States.

While we will never be able to eliminate the threat of infectious diseases completely, infection control programs play a crucial role in reducing the risk of transmission of infectious agents and ultimately saving lives.

Our mission is to provide consultation and support services to boost infectious disease prevention and control efforts across Alabama. The ARC IPC brings together subject matter experts with extensive knowledge in areas like infectious disease, control and prevention, epidemiology and surveillance, behavioral health, public health preparedness, forecasting and modeling, and pediatrics to address issues related to the management and response to emerging and reemerging infectious diseases.

Key to the Center’s mission is to provide training and technical assistance to infection control managers and others working in infection prevention and control across Alabama’s healthcare and public health systems in order to increase the current workforces’ skills in areas needed to detect, respond to, control, and prevent infectious disease outbreaks.  This includes but is not limited to local, district, and state health department IPC personnel, Infection Control Managers and Nurses located in in-patient and out-patient healthcare facilities and long-term care facilities, hospital epidemiologists, and other infection control practitioners. 

We hope our efforts will not only work to build capacity within the current workforce but also increase awareness for the need and importance of professionals in Infection Prevention and Control and highlight their role in surveillance, detection, response, and prevention of future infectious disease outbreaks.

Lisa McCormick, DrPH, MPH
Director, Alabama Regional Center for Infection Prevention and Control
Professor
University of Alabama at Birmingham