Rashida Conway, Director of Infection Prevention at Kaiser Permanente, emphasizes the importance of diversifying expertise within infection prevention during her dialogue with Jacob Hutcherson, Founder and CEO of Clutch Recruitment. Her insights echo a growing recognition of the multidisciplinary nature of infection prevention and control (IPC).
Starting off as an ER nurse, Rashida acknowledges the limited exposure to infection prevention principles during her nursing education. However, her drive to improve patient outcomes served as a catalyst for her transition into this crucial field. She suggests that any healthcare professional motivated by enhancing patient outcomes holds a foundational interest in infection prevention, even if they lack specific knowledge initially.
Yet, Rashida advocates for broadening the horizons beyond nursing when considering talent for infection prevention roles. She reflects on the invaluable insights and mentorship she received from individuals with backgrounds in public health and clinical lab specializations. Their contributions, she notes, enriched her understanding and the overall capacity of the infection prevention team.
Highlighting the merits of a multi-disciplinary approach, Rashida encourages the inclusion of professionals with Masters in Public Health and clinical lab backgrounds alongside nurses in infection prevention roles. Such diversity, she believes, fosters a more robust and versatile team capable of tackling the complex challenges inherent in infection prevention, ultimately contributing to better patient outcomes and a safer healthcare environment.