Department of Medicine
Faculty Profiles by Division

Department of Medicine

Faculty Profiles

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photo Ricardo Arbulu, MD

Infectious Diseases

Director, Antimicrobial Stewardship Program, UPMC Mercy

Associate Program Director, Internal Residency Program at UPMC Mercy


Phone: 412-232-7539

Office: 1400 Locust St
Mercy Building B (Ermire), Room 10549
Pittsburgh, PA 15219
Phone: 412-232-7539
Fax: 412-232-7378
Education and Training
MD, Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, 2004
Internal Medicine Internship, Henry Ford Hospital, 2007
Internal Medicine Residency, Henry Ford Hospital, 2009
Infectious Diseases Fellowship, University of Illinois at Chicago, 2011
Research Interest
Dr. Arbulu is interested in low-cost, highly-reproducible practice improvement interventions to support antibiotic decisions. He is currently evaluating the impact of an institutional structured intervention to stratify patients previously labeled as penicillin allergic with respect to their safety to receive beta-lactam antibiotics. The outcome measures include the appropriateness of antibiotics prescribed, drug-related adverse events and cost savings.
Clinical Interest
Dr. Arbulu’s interest and current practice is in general infectious diseases and antimicrobial stewardship.

Prior to joining University of Pittsburgh in 2018, Dr. Arbulu conceived and initiated the Antimicrobial Stewardship Program (ASP) at Mary Greeley Medical Center in Ames, Iowa. At the time of its inception in 2015, a program of this nature was lacking throughout Central Iowa outside of Des Moines. By the third quarter into the ASP, the Standardized Index Ratio of hospital-onset Clostridium difficile-associated diarrhea decreased by 58.1% from baseline. By the end of the ASP's second year, the hospital achieved a 21.6% cumulative reduction in the antimicrobial cost per patient-day. Dr. Arbulu later led the expansion of the ASP to nursing homes and to a critical care access hospital within the network. In 2018, the Iowa Healthcare Collaborative recognized Mary Greeley Hospital’s ASP with the 2018 Quality and Safety Award, quoting its innovative nature in the Region.
Educational Interest
Dr. Arbulu oversees the Infectious Diseases curriculum for the Internal Medicine Residency Program at UPMC Mercy. He also conducts educational activities directed to Internal Medicine Faculty and Pharmacy Residents at UPMC Mercy. Dr. Arbulu recognizes the importance of the education of surgeons and surgical staff in antimicrobial stewardship, and is currently involved in initiatives to this end.