Infection Preventionist Specialized Training - IPCO Version 2

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    • Non-member - $650
    • Member - $450
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Welcome!

Registrations for IPCO must be done by the individual who will be taking the course, under their individual login.  Registrations cannot be done by another person or under another person’s login. If you are not sure of your member status, please email educate@ahca.org before making payment. 

AHCA Infection Preventionist Specialized Training (IPCO) is a specialized course of study for healthcare professionals who desire to serve as Infection Preventionists (IPs) as established in the CMS Reform of Requirements of Participation for Long Term Care Facilities. Through this program, individuals will be specially trained to effectively implement and manage an Infection Prevention and Control Program in a nursing center.

 It addresses both clinical and organizational systems, processes and cultural aspects of infection prevention and control which are fundamental to effectively leading and administering a center’s Infection Prevention & Control program. 

Now more than ever, an Infection Prevention Control Officer (IPCO) is critical to have in your building/organization. The American Health Care Association/National Center for Assisted Living is happy to announce the launch of version 2 of the Infection Prevention Control Officer (IPCO) training.  This updated version incorporates information from the COVID-19 pandemic,  the most recent regulatory requirements as well as sections on Candida auris, Multi-Drug Resistant Organisms (MDROs), and Enhanced Barrier Precautions (EBP).  Additionally, there is an entire section on how to get an effective water management program running in your center.  

What’s new and what’s changed:
  • Updated regulatory requirements
  • Added:
    • Multi-drug Resistant Organisms (MDROs) and Enhanced Barrier Precautions (EBP)
    • Candida auris
    • Water management program
    • COVID-19
  • Increased from 23  to 25 ANCC contact hours
  • 22 hours of continuing education credit for Nursing Home Administration and Residential Care/ Assisted Living Administration
  • Increased length of time allowed to complete the training from 9 months to 12 months

The training is an on-line, self-study program on ahcancalED. The training includes online lectures, case studies and interactive components taught by an array of experts from around the country. 

Cost

The course is open to AHCA/NCAL members for $450 and non-members for $650. Group purchase with discount structure is available for groups of 25 or more. There are no refunds and no transfers.

Objectives

Students who complete this course successfully will be able to:

  • Effectively manage an Infection Prevention and Control Program within their health care setting
  • Convey to staff effective strategies to prevent infections
  • Implement practices and procedures to mitigate infections
  • Enforce practices and policies related to infection prevention
  • Provide on-going education to others including staff, residents and families

Individual module objectives are found in the module resource tab within the module presentations; be sure to access and review for each module.

You have 12 months to complete the course from the date you open the course but, most participants, following the advice above could successfully complete and receive their certificate in a much quicker time frame.

Participants must complete all training modules and successfully pass quizzes and final test with a grade of 80 or above to receive a certificate of completion from AHCA, valid for 3 years.  

Certificates

Three certificates will be awarded upon successful completion of the program:

  1. UNMC CON CNE will provide a certificate awarding contact hours.
  2. AHCA will provide a Specialized Training Completion certificate, valid for 3 years.  
  3. 22 hours of continuing education credit for Nursing Home Administration and Residential Care/ Assisted Living Administration. 
Renewal

Completion certificate of specialized training is valid for 3 years.

 Renewal may occur via the options below:

  • Option 1: Registering for a competency exam requiring a grade of 80% or above to successfully receive certificate of renewal. 
  • Option 2: Registering for the IPCO course and completing the course requirements as outlined above. 

Renewal cost will be the cost of the competency exam registration for option 1 or the cost of course registration for option 2. Option 1 cost is $200 for AHCA/NCAL members and $450 for non-members. 

Please note, the renewal competency exam is only available to individuals who have previously successfully completed the full IPCO course and are seeking renewal.  


Registrations for IPCO must be done by the individual who will be taking the course, under their individual login.  Registrations cannot be done by another person or under another person’s login.  If you are not sure of your member status, please email educate@ahca.org before making payment. 


© 2020 American Health Care Association. All rights reserved. 

All Infection Preventionist Specialized Training (IPCO) materials subject to this copyright may be photocopied or distributed for the purpose of nonprofit or educational advancement. The use, photocopying, and distribution for commercial purposes of any of these materials is expressly prohibited without the prior written permission of American Health Care Association.

 



Holly Harmon, RN, MBA, LNHA, FACHCA

Associate Vice President, Quality & Clinical Affairs, AHCA

 Holly Harmon, RN, MBA, LNHA, FACHCA brings both passion and a wealth of practical, real-world, clinical and operational experience to her role as Senior Director of Clinical Services at AHCA. Her extensive service in a wide array of settings including post-acute care, long term care, residential care, assisted living, independent living, a psychiatric hospital and occupational health have provided her with insights, knowledge, skills and innovative ideas which she exuberantly shares with others.

In addition to her vast clinical experience, Ms. Harmon has put her dynamic energy into leading the statewide Maine Culture Change Coalition/LANE as President, the Maine Partnership to Improve Dementia Care in Nursing Homes as Co-Chair, Vice-President of American College of Health Care Administrators, Maine Chapter and the Maine LANE Co-Convener for the national Advancing Excellence in America’s Nursing Homes Campaign. She also served as the Director of Quality Improvement & Regulatory Affairs at the Maine Health Care Association.

She puts her boundless energy and warm and energetic personality into training, education and presenting both, nationally and locally. She has made simplifying the complex world of long term and post-acute care policy and practice an art.

David Gifford, MD, MPH

Senior Vice President of Quality and Regulatory Affairs, AHCA

David Gifford, MD, MPH, is a geriatrician and former medical director of several nursing homes in Rhode Island. He currently serves as the Senior Vice President of Quality and Regulatory Affairs at the American Health Care Association. He helped create the Quality Department at AHCA which assists providers in their quality improvement efforts and works with administration officials on regulations and policies impacting the profession. Dr. Gifford also serves on the Board of the Advancing Excellence in America’s Nursing Homes campaign and the Baldrige Foundation Board. He is a former Director of the Rhode Island State Department of Health, where he received the National Governor’s award for Distinguished Service Award for State Officials. Prior to that he served as Chief Medical Officer for Quality Partners of Rhode Island where he directed CMS’ national nursing home-based quality improvement effort. He also holds a faculty appointment at Brown University Medical School and School of Public Health. He received his medical degree from Case Western Reserve University and conducted his geriatric fellowship at UCLA where he also earned his Master’s in Public Health while a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar. 

Pamela Truscott, MSN, RN, DNS-CT, QCP

Senior Manager, Clinical and Regulatory Services with the American Health Care Association

Pamela Truscott, MSN, RN, DNS-CT, QCP is the Senior Manager, Clinical and Regulatory Services with the American Health Care Association (AHCA).  She joined the AHCA family in June 2019 and has been actively involved with a variety of education, tools and resources such as: trauma-informed care, behavioral health, functional outcomes improvement, and infection prevention and control.  Prior to joining AHCA, Pam worked for the Nebraska Health Care Association as the Vice President of Professional Development for seven years.  She is an active member in the American Nurses Association as well as the American Association of Post-Acute Care Nurses.  Pam has over 20 years of long-term care experience and shares a passion for growing education and cultivating new leaders in long-term care.  

Marguerite McLaughlin, MA

VP, RIHCA

MARGUERITE M. McLaughlin has recently been named Vice President at the RI Healthcare Association.

For the past four years she has worked in the nation’s capital as Senior Director of Quality Improvement at AHCA. She pursues her passion for improving the lives of residents living in long term care centers by developing educational resources, tools and products for staff, and consulting with  staff to improve quality within nursing centers. Ms. McLaughlin is an enthusiastic educator and trainer working both locally and nationally to support change in healthcare. Her 30+ years of experience – at Saint Elizabeth Home, the Alzheimer’s Association and the Healthcentric Advisors (the state’s Quality Improvement Organization) have provided her with unique insights and “boots on the ground” experience in helping organizations improve care and service to their residents. She has served as liaison to the Industry Partnership for Healthcare under the Governor’s Workforce Board-Rhode Island. In this role she provided solutions to bridge the skills gaps within the healthcare industry.  She was Co-Chair of SAGE-RI for six years.

She earned a Master’s degree in Holistic Counseling at Salve Regina and applies this knowledge to individualized care and organizational culture.

Janet Snipes, NHA

Chair, AHCA Quality Improvement Committee

Janet Snipes NHA is the Executive Director of Holly Heights Center in Denver, CO. Janet has worked at Holly Heights for the past 40 years.  She has served on the Colorado Health Care Association Board of Directors for the past 20 years and was the Chairman of the Board from 2004-2014.  She served as Chair of the American Health Care Association (AHCA) Quality Improvement Committee from 2010 to 2014.  Janet is currently the Chair of the AHCA Survey Regulatory Committee and serves on the AHCA Board of Governors.

Stefan Gravenstein, MD, MPH

Geriatrician

 Professor of Medicine at  Case Western University and Brown university. Geriatrician, formerly John Franklin Chair of Geriatrics and Director of the Glennan Center for Geriatrics and Gerontology at Eastern Virginia Medical School (1996-2007), former Associate Division Chief for Geriatrics at University Medicine. Dr. Gravenstein has a long-standing interest in immunity, inflammation and aging especially in the context of influenza and nursing home care, and the topic of the majority of his publications. He also has a specific interest in quality improvement in health care, the culture of care, and how to improve care across care transitions. He served as Clinical Director at Quality Partners of Rhode Island, Medicare's Quality Improvement Organization for Rhode Island, where he worked with a team to improve patient safety and care transitions. At Brown he has worked with the Department of Community Health (Mor, PI; Gozalo) and Pop-Vicas on evaluating the impact of influenza vaccine on outcomes in long-term care. 

Elie Saade, MD, MPH

Assistant Professor, Medicine, CWRU School of Medicine

Dr. Elie Saade is Assistant Professor Medicine at  Case Western University School of Medicine. He specializes in infectious diseases.

Janet Robinson, RN, MEd, CIC

Senior Program Administrator, Healthcentric Advisors

Ms. Robinson is board certified in infection control, and has twenty-four years of consulting experience in long-term care facilities. She is an accomplished public speaker and educator in the area of long-term care infection control. In collaboration with the Rhode Island Department of Health as well as the American Health Care Association, she has contributed to the development of guidelines and training materials.

Linda Behan, BSN, RN, CWCN, CIC

Sr. Director of Infection Prevention and Control, Genesis HealthCare

Linda Behan BSN, RN, CIC is the Corporate Senior Director of Infection Prevention and Control for Genesis HealthCare.  Linda has been certified in infection prevention and control for over 10 years. She leads a team of Infection Preventionists in developing policies and procedures as well as developing and delivering education across the company.  Linda serves on the APIC Professional Development Committee and frequently presents at healthcare and professional organization conferences.

Gail Polanski, RN, BSN

President of Tara Therapy, LLC

Gail Polanski RN, BSN serves as the President of Tara Therapy, LLC, a position she has held since 2003.  As President, Gail leads a team of dedicated professionals in providing therapy services to patients in skilled nursing and rehabilitation centers, home health and hospice programs. Gail has more than 30 years of experience in senior management positions. Her expertise includes the delivery of rehabilitation services, denials management, compliance, and case mix management. She is knowledgeable of Medicare regulations and managed care contractual requirements.

 Prior to joining Tara Therapy, Gail was an independent consultant and entrepreneur. As owner of MG Healthcare Solutions, she provided consulting services to clients across the country on the changing Medicare payment program and SNF PPS regulations. Gail has presented at national conventions and is currently an active member of the AHCA Clinical Practice Committee and serves as the co-chair for the MDS/IMPACT subcommittee.

Stacey Merritt Hord, LNHA, MCD, CCC-SLP, QAPI

Vice President of Quality for Golden Living

Stacey Merritt Hord is the 2016/2017 Chair of the AHCA/NCAL Quality Improvement Committee and Vice President of Quality for Golden Living, the 3rd largest long term care provider in the country. Stacey is a health care executive with expertise in educating, deploying and sustaining Baldrige as a Business Model in post acute care and other sectors. Facilities under her operational oversight as an LNHA received AHCA Bronze and Silver recognition along with Alabama Level 1 Commitment to Excellence, Level 2 Progress Toward Excellence, and Level 3 Alabama Excellence recognition. Her faculty experience includes the AHCA/NCAL national convention, Alabama Quality Award Conference, AHCA Quality Symposium/Summit, Georgia Health Care Association Convention, and other venues. Stacey served on the panel of experts for the AL Quality Award Conference from 2004 - 2008 and has served as an AHCA Quality Award Examiner in multiple roles (Bronze, Silver, Silver Team Leader, Master Examiner) since 2002. She served as a member of the AHCA Quality Improvement Committee (QIC) and AHCA QAPI subcommittee from 2012- 2015. In addition, Stacey served as Chair of the 2015 QAPI Tools and Resources WorkGroup for the Quality Improvement Committee.

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Frequently Asked Questions
What is the AHCA Infection Preventionist Specialized Training (IPCO)?

It is a specialized training for healthcare professionals who desire to serve as Infection Preventionists (IPs) as established in the CMS Reform of Requirements of Participation for Long Term Care Facilities (required by November 2019).  Through this program, individuals will be specially trained to effectively implement and manage an Infection Prevention and Control Program in a nursing center. 

Do you have to be an AHCA member to register for IPCO?

No. Both AHCA members and nonmembers are eligible to participate in the IPCO course.

How much does it cost to take the IPCO training?

Registration fee: $450 members, $650 nonmembers. Payment and registration is completed by individual participant in the IPCO product in ahcancalED.

What's new and what has changed in IPCO version 2?
  • Updated regulatory requirements
  • Increased from 23 to 25 ANCC contact hours
  • 22 hours of continuing education credit NAB approved for Nursing Home Administration and Residential Care/ Assisted Living Administration
  • Length of time allowed to complete the training increased from 9 months to 12 months

Added course content:

    • Multi-drug Resistant Organisms (MDROs) and Enhanced Barrier Precautions (EBP)
    • Candida auris
    • Water management program
    • COVID-19

BONUS CONTENT:

All persons who register for the course receive access to additional non-CE approved bonus content. Topics include Interim COVID-19 Guidance, and courses on PPE and N-95 mask use. 

How can an individual register and pay for IPCO? 

The individual who wants to take the IPCO course must login to ahcancalED and register for the course under their individual login.  Payment will be made in ahcancalED upon registration via credit card or E-check. Please be sure to have your credit card or banking information ready at checkout. Paying by credit card or E-check will grant automatic access to the course. Registrations for IPCO cannot be done by another person or under another person’s ahcancalED login.

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How can an organization group register and pay for IPCO?

Group purchase is available for groups of 25 or more.  AHCA offers the following discount structure for groups: 25-49 registrations will receive $25 off each registration.  50 or more registrations will receive $75 off each registration. 

After full payment is made for group purchase of IPCO, the designated individuals who the IPCO registration payment was made for, will be provided with a unique group code for their group which will translate to $0 due upon registration (because full payment has already been received).  One code will be provided for each group with a max allowance of times that the code can be used based on the group’s payment. 

Each individual will need to login to the AHCA website to access ahcancalED and then complete their own registration using the group code.

Can I get a refund on the IPCO product if I no longer want to take the course?

No refunds are issued for IPCO.

Can my IPCO registration be transferred to a colleague?

IPCO registrations cannot be transferred. The individual that registers for the course is the only one that has access to it.

Who is eligible to take this training?

Anyone can take this training.  The AHCA Infection Preventionist Specialized Training does not require a particular healthcare license. 

AHCA/NCAL recommends that administrators also consider taking the course to gain a deeper understanding of infection prevention and control in the overall operation of the building.  Just a reminder that administrators should not serve as designated Infection Preventionists unless they have separate formal advanced clinical training and/or licensing such as a nursing license.     

Please note, there are specific requirements for the individual(s) who will serve as Infection Preventionist(s).  CMS requirements for a designated Infection Preventionist state:

483.80 (b) Infection preventionist. The facility must designate one or more individual(s) as the infection preventionist(s) (IPs) who are responsible for the facility’s IPCP. The IP must:

(1) Have primary professional training in nursing, medical technology, microbiology, epidemiology, or other related field;

(2) Be qualified by education, training, experience or certification;

(3) Work at least part-time at the facility; and

(4) Have completed specialized training in infection prevention and control.

What are the requirements to successfully complete IPCO?

Participate in each module and successfully complete quizzes throughout the course and final test (achieve at least 80% correct each time)

Modules 1-7 will have quizzes with 5 questions (4 of 5 questions must be accurately completed) except for module 3 which will have 10 questions (8 of 10 questions must be accurately completed).

The final test after Module 9 will have 20 questions (16 of 20 questions must be accurately completed)

Each module quiz may be attempted three times before the participant is required to repeat the module and then reattempt answering questions. 

Complete course evaluation after each module and at the end of the course. 

Course completion must occur within 12 months of the date the registrant starts the first required component of the program; which is the copyright agreement.(not registration date)

How long does it take on average to complete the IPCO course?

The learning time of all modules, review of additional resources, time to complete the modules and final course evaluations and quizzes/final test accounts for 25 hours. 

Participants are encouraged to spread out the course over time in an organized manner – such as scheduling module reviews on various dates/times when they can focus their attention to it.  The course could be completed within a week or over several months based on how the individual would like to approach the program. 

Are Contact Hours awarded for IPCO?

Yes, 25 ANCC contact hours and 22 hours of continuing education credit are NAB approved for Nursing Home Administration and Residential Care/ Assisted Living Administration are available for completion of this program.  This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements and policies of the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation (ANCC) through the joint providership of the University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Nursing Continuing Nursing Education (UNMC CON CNE) (provider) and American Health Care Association.

The University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Nursing Continuing Nursing Education is accredited with distinction as a provider of continuing nursing education by the American Nurses Credentialing Center’s Commission on Accreditation.

What does a participant get when they complete the IPCO course?

Participants receive three certificates at the completion of IPCO:

  • UNMC CON CNE will provide a certificate awarding 25 contact hours to participants who successfully achieve the completion requirements.
  • 22 hours of continuing education credit are NAB approved for Nursing Home Administration and Residential Care/ Assisted Living Administration
  • Specialized Training Completion certificate from AHCA, valid for 3 years. 
How long do the certificates last?

The CE certificates do not expire. The Specialized Training Completion certificate expires after 3 years from issue date.

How can someone renew their IPCO certificate?

Renewal may occur by the options below:

Option 1: Registering for a competency exam requiring a grade of 80% or above to successfully receive certificate of renewal. This option is only available to individuals who have previously successfully completed the full IPCO course and are seeking renewal.  

Option 2: Registering for the IPCO course and completing the course requirements as outlined above. 

Is IPCO a certification?

No, IPCO is a specialized training program with a certificate upon successful completion.

Does IPCO meet CMS requirements?

Yes, IPCO meets the expectations CMS has outlined on the required components of the specialized training. 

CMS is not endorsing any particular training, rather CMS is focused on the content and intensity/duration of what will meet the specialized training requirement.  Based on information AHCA received from CMS, the IPCO training meets both the content and intensity/duration of CMS requirements.  

Can I print the presentation slides and how can I access the resources within the module? 

Each module contains a resource guide which includes a copy of the presentation and any necessary supporting documents discussed within the module. This resource guide can be found at the top right corner within each module. 

I am having technical difficulties with IPCO, can you help?

Please email us at educate@ahca.org.

Where can I get more information on IPCO?

For more information, visit the AHCA Infection PreventionistSpecialized Training (IPCO) product page or email educate@ahca.org.

Components visible upon registration.

"I just wanted to share some kudos to the program that AHCA has developed.  We had survey last week with a team of contract surveyors who were from four different states.  They were extremely complimentary of our infection control program.  All four surveyors were in the room and met with Jesalyn for about 90 minutes and at the end of the meeting, they stated how impressed they were with her knowledge, expertise, tracking and antibiotic stewardship!  They stated they hadn’t seen this type of infection control program in other facilities.  She told them about your course and the knowledge she had gained that allowed her to put together the program! I just wanted you to be aware of what an awesome job you did in putting together the course!"  - Janet Snipes, Executive Director of Holly Heights Nursing Center

"What a great program! I was able to complete at my own pace and learned a lot." - Connie Francioli, RN,WCC, Director of Nursing, Odd Fellow & Rebekah Rehabilitation RHCC Inc.


"The AHCA IPCO program gave me the tools I needed to be effective in my role as the Infection Preventionist and to initiate an antibiotic stewardship program.  The modules and website were easy to navigate and very convenient for my schedule. Thanks a bunch!"- Adriana Casale, BSN, RN, Assistant Director of Nursing Services, Roberts Health Centre


"I thoroughly enjoyed the course.  I am a new to the Infection Prevention world and this engaging and interactive course provided an excellent foundation for me.  I hope to use this as a stepping stone to advance the Infection Prevention culture within my facility and my community." - Daniel Mazzone, Associate Director of Nursing and Infection Preventionist at the Acadia Center for Nursing


"The IPCO training was intense but I gained the confidence to implement key initiatives in our facility, including antibiotic stewardship.  I have a lot to learn but I know I can go back to the course and get the information I need with any situation that I am confronted with." - Karla Ruther, Clarence Senior Living Director of Nursing


"I really enjoyed the IPCO program. It is full of knowledge and information for any infection control program.  I would like to see more infection control class with updates on organisms and new ROPs." - Helen Durden, RN, Education Coordinator, Eagle Health and Rehabilitation


"This course was a good blend of review, new information and practical tools for program improvement in both skilled and long term care settings. I would recommend for any nurse interested in Infection control and prevention." - Becci St Laurent | Senior Director of Education, Palm Healthcare Management, llc


"I am recommending it to our Corporate Team members here at Laurel Health Care.  I know some Associate Team members at Ciena Heath Care have taken this training program, as well, and were very satisfied.  It really enhances and clarifies so much Infection Control information.  I feel much more confident with being and Infection Control practitioner." - Marlissa Corby, Corporate Compliance Officer, Laurel Health Care Company


 

 

 

 

Please review the attached document before you begin the course. Help is available at educate@ahca.org 

How can an organization group register and pay for IPCO?

One user can purchase multiple registrations for other users by adding them to their cart during the checkout process; using the button displayed in image below. (This can only be done if all individuals have an ahcancalED account.) The price of the training will be based on each registrant’s member type (member or non-member). 

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*payment tip: please be sure when you are paying with a credit card the bill-to and shipping address are the same* 

Group purchase is available for groups of 25 or more. If you are interested in group purchasing, please email educate@ahca.org

After full payment is made for group purchase, the designated individuals who the course registration payment was made for, will be provided with a unique group code for their group which will translate to $0 due upon registration (because full payment has already been received).  One code will be provided for each group with a max allowance of times that the code can be used based on the group’s payment. 

Each individual will need to login to the AHCA website to access ahcancalED and then complete their own registration using the group code.

PLEASE NOTE THAT WE ONLY ACCEPT PAYMENT IN THE FORM OF A CHECK FOR GROUP PURCHASES.  

NCAL AHCA