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Jamie Swift named chief infection prevention officer of Ballad Health
Ballad Health announced that Jamie Swift has been named chief infection prevention officer and assistant vice president of infection prevention for the health system.
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Swift has been a strong influence in the community, while serving as an essential member of Ballad Health’s Corporate Emergency Operations Center. She’s served as one of the leading experts for COVID-19 in the Appalachian Highlands region, never turning down an opportunity to educate her community on best practices to stay safe and healthy during the pandemic.
In her new role as chief infection prevention officer for Ballad Health’s 21-hospital system, Swift will continue to focus on expanding the infection prevention department. She will also continue Ballad Health’s pursuit to become a zero harm health system by continuing to target hospital-acquired infections.
“I’m extremely grateful to serve as Ballad Health’s chief infection prevention officer. For years, I’ve trained and studied in the field of infection prevention, knowing that a pandemic would likely occur at some point in my lifetime,” Swift said.
“Now that the COVID-19 pandemic is upon us, I believe infection prevention is as important as ever in the operations of a health system. I commend Ballad Health and its leadership for recognizing this and investing in the health and safety of our patients, team members and community.”
Prior to this role, Swift served as corporate director of infection prevention for Ballad Health and legacy Mountain States Health Alliance, beginning in June 2013. Swift joined Mountain States as an infection prevention manager in July 2011.
“Jamie exudes a deep commitment to zero-harm practices, and she’s an ultimate results-driven servant leader,” said Dr. Amit Vashist, Ballad Health’s chief clinical officer. “Her expertise and experience are unmatched. Jamie is a national thought leader in the world of infection prevention, and we at Ballad Health are so fortunate to have her on our team. I can’t wait to continue on our zero harm journey at Ballad Health with Jamie in her new role.”
Swift has earned numerous awards throughout her career, most notably in 2017, when she became one of only seven recipients in the nation to be named a National APIC (Association of Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology) Infection Prevention Hero. She was also honored earlier this year with a YWCA Tribute to Women award, which recognized Swift for “playing a significant role in the safety of people throughout the region.”
Swift said she became extremely interested in the field of infection prevention while attending nursing school at Milligan College. After she earned her nursing degree in 1999, Swift worked for one year as a registered nurse at Johnson City Medical Center, where she provided direct patient care to acutely ill patients.
In 2000, Swift joined the Washington County Health Department as a public health nurse, and eventually earned a promotion in 2002 to serve as the region’s director of communicable and environmental disease services.
In that role, Swift served as lead investigator for all foodborne, waterborne and healthcare-associated outbreaks. She also oversaw all the division’s programs, including immunizations, epidemiology, tuberculosis, the AIDS Ryan White program and STD/HIV.
Swift is currently working to obtain her master’s degree in nursing with a concentration in infection prevention and control from American Sentinel University in Colorado. She is expected to graduate in February 2021.