Tampa General Hospital Offers Infection Prevention Advice to Safeguard Businesses, Organizations

Published: May 27, 2020

By Tampa General Hospital


Tampa General Hospital’s top infection prevention experts are consulting with leading organizations in Tampa Bay and beyond to help them keep employees, customers and visitors safer from COVID-19 and other infectious diseases.  

Tampa, FL (May 27, 2020) – Tampa General Hospital is introducing TGH Prevention Response Outreach, a new consulting service that will offer the hospital’s expertise in infection prevention to organizations in Tampa Bay and beyond who want to safeguard their employees and visitors as they re-open to the public.

The new service, known as TPRO, will allow businesses, attractions and other organizations to benefit from the advice of some of Florida’s top infection prevention experts, including leaders of the hospital’s Infection Prevention team, Infectious Disease physicians from the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine, and TGH’s private practice physicians who specialize in infectious disease.

“As an academic medical center, we already have the experts and the infrastructure in place to be able to advise organizations and businesses on how they can improve safety,” said John Couris, president and CEO of Tampa General Hospital. “Offering this service is another way we can innovate to help safeguard the health and well-being of residents in Tampa Bay and beyond.”

Tampa General recently partnered with the Florida Aquarium to implement new safety protocols to prepare for the Aquarium’s re-opening to the public with limited capacity on May 15. The TGH Infection Prevention team, along with USF Health Infectious Disease physicians, reviewed the Aquarium’s safety plan, toured the site and evaluated every exhibit and habitat in the facility. TGH’s experts made several recommendations to help the Aquarium implement additional safety precautions.

TGH is now consulting with other organizations in Tampa Bay to advise them on how they can put safety precautions in place in their own workplaces, as well as providing ongoing education in order to prevent the transmission and spread of COVID-19 and other infectious diseases.

“We are looking at environmental as well as workforce-related issues to promote a safe environment for them and for any patrons that visit their sites,” said Peggy Thompson, TGH director of Infection Prevention. “We’re helping them make smart decisions.”

Thompson, an RN with 30 years of specialized experience, national certification and awards for infection prevention and control, leads a diverse team of professionals with training in nursing and public health.

As TGH’s associate hospital epidemiologist, Dr. Seetha Lakshmi is trained to mitigate and prevent infectious disease outbreaks.

“How is the air circulating? What is the traffic flow? What about the intensity of people’s contacts and the number of their contacts?” said Lakshmi, who also is an assistant professor of Infectious Disease at the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine. “We want to look at how you can modify people’s behavior to decrease infection and come up with a customized plan based on those variables.”

Tampa General Hospital’s experts are available to consult with businesses and other organizations on their infection prevention plans for a safe re-opening – whether in Tampa Bay, elsewhere in Florida, or beyond. Businesses can learn more by filling out an online form at https://www.tgh.org/tpro or calling the new TPRO phone number: (813) 660-TPRO.

Tampa General Hospital, a 1007-bed non-profit academic medical center, delivers world-class care as the region’s only center for Level l trauma and comprehensive burn care. It is one of the nation’s busiest adult solid organ transplant centers and is the primary teaching hospital for the USF Health Morsani College of Medicine. With five medical helicopters, Tampa General Hospital transports critically injured or ill patients from 23 surrounding counties to receive the advanced care they need. Tampa General houses a nationally accredited comprehensive stroke center and its 32-bed Neuroscience Intensive Care Unit is the largest on the West Coast of Florida. It also is home to an 82-bed Level IV neonatal intensive care unit, and a nationally accredited rehabilitation center. Tampa General Hospital’s footprint includes 17 Tampa General Medical Group Primary Care offices, TGH Family Care Center Kennedy, TGH Brandon Healthplex, TGH Virtual Health and 15 outpatient Radiology Centers. Tampa Bay residents also receive world-class care from the TGH Urgent Care powered by Fast Track network of clinics, and they can even receive home visits in select areas through TGH Urgent Care at Home, powered by Fast Track.  As one of the largest hospitals in Florida, Tampa General Hospital is first in the state to open a command center in partnership with GE Healthcare. For more information, go to www.tgh.org.