Montefiore in the News
Fighting Infection and Tackling Superbugs: Montefiore Hires New Hospital Epidemiologist
- February 12, 2019
Dr. Theresa Madaline Brings Impressive Track Record and Focus on Protecting Patients
Bronx, NY ---Montefiore Health System has promoted Dr. Theresa Madaline to the position of Hospital Epidemiologist, a role dedicated to safeguarding the hospital and its patients against infectious diseases. At age 36, she is among the youngest physicians to ever hold this position. Dr. Madaline, assistant professor of Medicine, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, will lead Infection Prevention and Control efforts at Montefiore and serve as its point person with the New York State Department of Health and other public health authorities.
“This is an amazing opportunity to work with the incredibly talented infectious diseases physicians in our division, as well as hospital leaders, providers in other specialties, nurses, and other associates who care for and support our patients,” said Dr. Madaline. “Being the daughter of a nurse, I understand the importance of a multidisciplinary approach to process improvement and patient safety at every level. Meaningful progress can only be made when we work together under the guiding principle of protecting patients before all else.”
Dr. Madaline’s fascination with infectious disease was sparked by the 1995 film “Outbreak,” a fictional account of how a monkey smuggled in from Africa carrying a deadly tropical disease, threatens the health of a California town. The film captured her imagination but also got her thinking practically about the effect of disease on populations and what can be done to control it.
“Dr. Madaline’s firsthand experience caring for our patients, and success in driving down preventable infections, combined with her passion and ingenuity, made her hands down the best person for this job,” said Dr. Peter Shamamian, vice president and chief quality officer, Montefiore Health System and professor of surgery, Einstein.
“You can count every infection and pull together the most sophisticated methodology to do so, but without the frontline perspective of how things work, we’ll ultimately fail. That’s what Dr. Madaline brings in spades,” said Dr. Shamamian.
Dr. Madaline, who was selected after a lengthy national search among infection prevention leaders, has a track record of bolstering quality improvement and bridging antibiotic stewardship and infection prevention.
After joining Montefiore in 2011, she created its Outpatient Antibiotic Therapy (OPAT) program with Dr. Priya Nori, medical director, Montefiore’s Antibiotic Stewardship Program, which reduced readmissions by 15 percent among patients who were discharged from the hospital on IV antibiotics. Dr. Madaline and Dr. Nori led the team of physicians, infusion companies, administrative staff, nursing facilities and a bilingual nurse coordinator to accommodate the needs of people undergoing treatment for infectious conditions, ranging from common skin infections to complicated joint replacement infections. OPAT patients, who often have complex chronic infections, can experience 30-day hospital readmission at rates of up to 50 percent.
She has also been named to the Quality Improvement Committee of the Infectious Diseases Society of America, and is leading efforts to present a new performance improvement workshop for infectious diseases leaders at IDWeek 2019.
Dr. Madaline previously served as co-director of the microbiology and infectious diseases course at Einstein and the director of Clinical Infectious Diseases Services at Montefiore’s Weiler campus. Since 2016, she has been a member of Montefiore’s internal quality department, the Network Performance Group, focused on infection prevention and safety.
In her new role, Dr. Madaline plans to develop and expand Montefiore’s infection control team, including additional certified infection prevention nurses, infectious diseases physicians and data analysts, furthering Montefiore’s commitment to providing the very best care to its patients.