"Superbug" expert Dr. Jon Lloyd to deliver Fairfield University Graduate School of Nursing lecture on the deadly and drug resistant MRSA


One of the most daunting problems facing hospitals in the 21st Century is the multifaceted methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, alias MRSA, a sometimes drug-resistant superbug. Almost 100,000 people develop invasive MRSA infections annually, and 19,000 of those people die, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

Also known as Staph infections, they can be deadly. While a major concern at hospitals, in recent years infections have been occurring increasingly in homes and in the greater community. On Tuesday, May 5 at 7:30 p.m., a superbug expert, Jon Lloyd, M.D., the senior clinical advisor of MRSA Prevention for the Plexus Institute, will deliver a talk at the "Clinical Nurse Leader Symposium," sponsored by Fairfield University's School of Nursing. The event, free and open to the public, will take place in the Nancy Lynch P'95 School of Nursing Auditorium.

Jeanne Novotny, Ph.D., RN, FAAN, dean of the School of Nursing, said, "We are delighted to have this foremost expert address our students and the public on this very important health matter."

Dr. Lloyd, a vascular surgeon who advises regional and national organizations on quality and safety issues, will discuss the best practices for warding off MRSA. Dr. Sally Gerard, assistant professor, said MRSA is a huge health care concern, one that has grown rapidly in hospitals over the last decade. "Our students have ample exposure to this in their clinicals and will be dealing with it as healthcare professionals when they graduate. Dr. Lloyd will speak to our nurses who are well aware of this terrible problem that complicates patient status, increases their hospital stay and increases mortality."

People can get skin infections due to staph/MRSA, but because of the antibiotic resistance that has been occurring, many of these skin infections do not heal. This is blamed on new strains of staph - and this is happening more and more outside of hospitals. Statistics show it is more apt to occur due to hospitalizations and to those who have weakened immune systems. Organ, muscle and tissue damage can result.

Dr. Lloyd served as co-principal investigator for The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation-funded Positive Deviance MRSA Prevention Partnership, coordinated by the Plexus Institute in Princeton, New Jersey. In March, results were announced about its MRSA prevention program that employed "positive deviance" (PD). It led to significant reductions in MRSA incidence, ranging from 26 to 62 percent less infections at hospitals that participated in the study. In effect, this program turned the tide on antibiotic-resistant infections. The encouraging study added to the growing body of evidence that hospitals can make a difference in MRSA rates even now that the availability of new antibiotics has halted. It engaged frontline hospital staff - those in direct contact with patients - in finding out the best practices for taking infection-control measures at all times. Dr. Lloyd will talk about those practices in his talk.

He worked with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Veterans Administration Pittsburgh Healthcare System on a successful project in 2004. The MRSA prevention model that emerged out of this collaboration inspired and informed a statewide MRSA prevention initiative.

He received his M.D. from the University of Utah School of Medicine, and completed his training in general, thoracic and vascular surgery at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. He served as a trauma surgeon and major in the U.S. Army at the Third Field Army Hospital in Saigon, Vietnam.

Bookmark and Share

Media Contact: Meg McCaffrey, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2726, mmccaffrey@fairfield.edu

Posted on April 30, 2009

Vol. 41, No. 327