University of Pennsylvania Prevention Epicenter

First Funded: 2011

Overview: The Southeastern Pennsylvania Adult and Pediatric Prevention Epicenter Network (i.e., the Penn-CHOP Epicenter) studies seek to build on the considerable track record of the University of Pennsylvania, Perelman School of Medicine, and the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) by further elucidating the epidemiology and impact of healthcare associated infections (HAIs) and antimicrobial resistance (AR), as well as identifying and testing novel strategies to address these urgent problems.

CDC Prevention Epicenters - innovative research to protect patients

About this Epicenter

The Penn/CHOP Prevention Epicenter represents a broad collaboration across multiple institutions in southeastern Pennsylvania with a dual focus on adult and pediatric patient populations.

The Penn-CHOP Epicenter provides a rich scientific environment where investigators with complementary areas of expertise collaborate to address the most urgent issues in HAI and AR. These investigators bring expertise in diverse fields including infectious diseases, internal medicine, geriatrics, critical care, pulmonary medicine, emergency medicine, epidemiology, biostatistics, bioinformatics, health economics, implementation science, sociology, and microbiology.

Numerous clinical and research resources help to support the mission of the Penn/CHOP Epicenter site, including the Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics; the Antimicrobial Resistance, Healthcare Epidemiology, and Antimicrobial Stewardship Research Collaborative; the Leonard Davis Institute for Health Economics; the Institute on Aging; the Center for Public Health Initiatives; the Penn/CHOP Microbiome Program; the CHOP Research Institute; and the CHOP Center for Pediatric Clinical Effectiveness.


The Penn-CHOP group has collaborated extensively with other CDC Epicenter sites and healthcare networks to answer critical scientific questions. Concerted efforts are required to define the epidemiology and impact of emerging HAI and AR issues, as well as identify and test novel strategies to address these urgent problems. The considerable research support and infrastructure provided by the CDC’s Prevention Epicenters Program has served to facilitate significant scientific achievements demonstrated in part by 71 peer-reviewed publications and 110 scientific abstracts from the Penn-CHOP Epicenter group since site inception in 2011.

Core Research Study Areas

The current projects build on the strong foundation established by prior work from the Penn-CHOP investigators. These studies focus on acute, post-acute, and outpatient care settings and include adult and pediatric populations. Finally, these projects include collaborations with other sites, health care networks, public health agencies, and regional partnerships.

Core research study areas include:

Multicenter Collaborative Research Projects

  • Communication And Coaching to Increase Steward Influence (CACTIS)
    Project lead: Julia E. Szymczak, PhD
  • Reducing Vancomycin Administration in Pediatric Sepsis (REVAMP-Sepsis)
    Project lead: Katie Chiotos, MD, MSCE
  • Fecal Microbiota Transplantation to Address Colonization and Environmental Contamination with Multidrug-Resistant Organisms (FACE-MDRO)
    Project lead: Brendan Kelly, MD.

Principal Investigator

Ebbing Lautenbach, MD, MPH, MS
Co-Principal Investigator: Jeffrey Gerber, MD, PhD, MSCE