WHAT IS THE GERRY HAYNES AWARD?
Each year, infection control professionals in Texas have the opportunity to honor one of their own with the selection of the winner of the Gerry Haynes Memorial Award. The award was established to recognize excellence in infection control and prevention practice and is open to any current preventionist in the state.
Gerry Haynes was a nurse who practiced in a variety of specialties during her career. She graduated from Hermann Hospital School of Nursing in Houston in 1961. She received a BS from the University of Houston in 1971 and later an MPH from the UT School of Public Health. She found her niche when she took on the role of infection control practitioner in 1973. At that time, the specialty of infection control practice was in its infancy and most healthcare facilities did not even have job descriptions for the position. She worked to educate physicians, nurses, and hospital administration on the importance of infection control and the role it plays in patient and staff safety.
Gerry served as the first president of the newly formed Texas Society for Infection Control Practitioners in 1975-1976. She helped create one of the earliest known infection control manuals with policies and procedures related to infection control issues. She worked with the CDC on a program called Surveillance Prevention and Nosocomial Infection. She also had a voluntary faculty appointment through the UT Medical School in Houston beginning in 1975 where she taught about infection control to medical students.
Gerry Haynes achieved a great deal in a short lifetime. She developed a kidney malignancy and passed away in the late 1970s. It is unknown how much more she might have accomplished in infection control. As a way to honor Gerry Haynes, an award in her name was first presented in 1983. The first recipient was Charlene Hardy. Since that time, 18 other infection control practitioners have been the recipients of this honor. The award seeks an individual who has exhibited excellence in individual infection control and prevention practice through professional accomplishments, clinical research, publication, or added to the body of infection control knowledge.
2015 Winner of Gerry Haynes Award – Brenda Helms
2014 Winner of Gerry Haynes Award – Val Sparks
2013 Winner of Gerry Haynes Award – Susan Jones