What is SPARC?

In previous years, the Maryland Statewide Prevention and Reduction Collaborative (SPARC) focused on prevention and reduction of Clostridioides difficile infections (CDI). The collaborative has been extremely successful with a reduction in CDI of 50% for the 13 hospitals that participated in the collaborative and a reduction in the Maryland Standardized Infection Ratio from 0.92 to 0.61.

Given the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, SPARC has shifted focus to COVID-19 and general infection prevention practices in Maryland hospitals. Our collaborative focuses on bringing Maryland hospitals together to identify their needs during the COVID-19 pandemic and leverage peer to peer learning that will support hospitals as they navigate the current public health crisis.

Using expertise and resources available through the Maryland Prevention EpiCenters (University of Maryland and Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine) and the Maryland Department of Health, SPARC will help hospitals implement interventions to enhance hospital response to the COVID-19 pandemic and general infection prevention practices.

Addressing the Needs of Maryland Hospitals during the COVID-19 Pandemic

The SPARC collaborative will focus on facilitating learning between Maryland hospitals to address needs during COVID-19. We draw these needs directly from the hospitals that participate in our collaborative. Topics we plan to examine include adapting to new guidelines for hospitals as the pandemic continues, managing both seasonal influenza and COVID-19, and providing guidance about appropriate use of personal protective equipment (PPE) for hospital staff.