Special Pathogens Program Update

Thank you for attending the Special Pathogens Team Kick-off on 8/12/21!

If you weren’t able to attend virtually or in person, you can watch the presentation here: UW Health – WebEx – Replay Recorded Meeting

Special Pathogens Team Quarterly Training

If you haven’t already, please sign-up here for our 45-minute in-person required hands-on training of full PPE Tyvek suit donning and doffing.

Date: Starting September 8th and ending September 15th

Location: Clinical Simulation Center, H6/1

PPE Videos

Here are the links to the videos we watched during the kick-off.

T shirts

Please complete the survey for your name and T shirt size and we can order Special Pathogens Team T shirts, or you can use your smartphone camera to scan the QRCode:

We would also like your feedback on the best way to communicate as a team. Right now, you receive emails. Would utilizing the blog be helpful? If you haven’t seen it yet– is it something that we could “beef up” to meet your needs? What would be useful to have on the blog?

Thank you again for being part of the Special Pathogens Team!

Travel History Sreeening

Date:         March 8, 2019

To:            UW Health Care Providers

From:        Daniel Shirley, MD, MS, Associate Hospital Epidemiologist and the Pathogens Team

Re: Ebola Virus Disease Outbreak Update

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released an update and reminder on February 8, 2019 regarding the Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) outbreak in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). As of February 21, 2019, 890 total cases have been reported with 559 deaths; 172 suspected cases remain under investigation; all cases are in DRC.

The UW Health Special Pathogens Team has been following the situation and continues general readiness training for the identification and care of patients with Ebola or other highly pathogenic infectious diseases. The Special Pathogens Team remains in contact with our Wisconsin and Dane County Health Departments and regional partners to ensure mutual understanding of the preparedness status of assessment and treatment centers in our region.

The CDC recommends that providers continue to routinely obtain a travel history as part of patient care. As there is not an active threat for Ebola Virus Disease in our area at this time, we have not reinstituted the electronic medical record-based screening questions at check-in. Should the travel history (travel to DRC) and presenting symptoms raise concern for Ebola Virus Disease, please place the patient in a private room and contact Infection Control on-call (pager 2570) for further instruction.

Symptoms of EVD include fever, severe headache, muscle pain, weakness, fatigue, diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain, or unexplained hemorrhage. Symptoms may appear anywhere from 2 to 21 days after contact with the virus, with an average of 8 to 10 days. Many common illnesses can have these same symptoms, including influenza.

For further information, please refer to the:


or contact Daniel Shirley, MD, MS, Associate Hospital Epidemiologist and the Pathogens Team

August Training

I wanted to make everyone aware of the next quarter’s training, in August.  Dates, times, and locations are below. There is no signup needed, these will be drop in sessions only.  Lab staff will only need to complete multi-component donning and doffing.  Nursing will need to complete multi-component and Tyvek  donning and doffing. November’s training will be patient scenario based.  If you are unavailable for these dates please let Kelli Rogers or myself know.


Date      Time                     Location

8/20      06-0845               G5/114

8/20      1730-1930          G5/114

8/21      14-1630               G5/142

8/22      14-1630             G5/164

8/23      1730-1930          G5/170

8/24      06-0845              G5/170


Training is not included into your FTE. This will need to be completed on the time that works best for you. I anticipate that the team members who have done this in the past, may only take an hour or so but we have allotted two hours to assure the newer members get the most out of the training.

Please remember to use the EDU code and cost center # 93040 when clocking your time in Mytime.


UW Health Special Pathogens Preparedness

UW Health is revitalizing the old Ebola Plan into the New Special Pathogens Program for a sustained response team that can deal with the ever changing global health risks.

The National Ebola Training Center (NETEC) and ASPR TRACIE has recently changed their viewpoint to broaden their outlook to not just focusing on Ebola but to include an all hazards approach to combat the dynamic ever changing global health risk. Our organizations has also responded to this change to reflect the same viewpoint to include this all hazards approach.

Our planning has been under way for several months, all those involved in our preparedness activities are meeting monthly to refine plans and share information. Linda Stevens, Director of Nursing and Safety; Dr. Dan Shirley, Infection Control and Infectious Disease; Kelli Rogers, Infection Control Practitioner; Mike Stephens, Safety and Emergency Management; and with operational leaders across the organization to develop this plan.

Our comprehensive organizational plan will be available on this website. The plan will be continually being updated as new operational details are worked out and as new guidance becomes available from the Centers for Disease Control or the Wisconsin Division of Public Health or the NETEC.

Regular updates will also be posted to the blog.

Thank you to everyone involved in planning. Staff and patient safety are our top priority, and we recognize that education and communication are essential to creating and maintaining a safe environment.  Please submit any questions or concerns to mailto:mstephens@uwhealth.org or  krogers2@uwhealth.org