Emily Bottom Western Kentucky University
Abstract Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a type of staph that is resistant to certain antibiotics, including the most common antibiotics penicillin, and ampicillin. 1-2% of people carry MRSA on their skin. Infections caused by MRSA, for the most part, are not different from any other staph infection, although some strains of MRSA may be more aggressive than regular staph. The diagnosis of a MRSA infection requires laboratory testing. Laboratory testing can also be important since MRSA's antibiotic resistance may make it more difficult to manage; and can also be very expensive. Methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) has been an arising problem in hospitals across the United States. Most people don’t realize the risk they have of acquiring MRSA just by entering an infected patient’s room. MRSA has cost America so much money just for prevention and treatment. The economy, society, and United States as a whole have been affected by MRSA in some way.
Keywords: antibiotics, MRSA, prevention,
MRSA has been seen as associated with healthcare settings, both in hospitals and in other healthcare facilities such as nursing homes and assisted living facilities. MRSA germs can live for hours on the surfaces of blood-pressure cuffs or other medical equipment, and are transmitted easily between patients and health care workers.
Infections in these settings are referred to as healthcare-associated MRSA. The problem in the United States, among other places, is that MRSA infections are increasingly occurring in people who have not recently been hospitalized, or received treatment via surgery etc. These people include people living in prisons, people who play sports at local facilities, or even people working out at a gym. Many people can carry symptoms for weeks before even noticing any symptoms. This makes it extremely difficult to determine where a person might have acquired his or her MRSA infection.
MRSA has affected all hospital sizes around the United States for decades. Research has shown there is a positive correlation in the size and location of hospitals and MRSA infection, except for the plateau that occurred in 1990-91. The relationship showed that hospitals in the mid-western and western regions had the lowest percent of cases. The eastern and southern regions of the United States were first to show dramatic outbreaks.(Bowler, Bresnahan, Bradfish, Fernandez; 2010)There are many confounding variables that can affect the outbreaks of MRSA in hospitals in certain regions as well. For example, the number of nursing homes in the surrounding area almost always increases the number of MRSA cases reported.
More specifically, neonatal intensive care units have been struck by the ongoing plague of MRSA. A study was conducted by Xiaoyan Song, PhD; Eli Perencevich, MD; Joseph Campos, PhD; Billie L. Short, MD; and Nalini Singh, MD, MPH. “This study aimed to determine the clinical and economic impact of MRSA colonization or infection on infants and to measure excess mortality, length of stay, and hospital charges attributable to MRSA.” (2010) The number of infants that have been diagnosed with MRSA has increased from 2% to 64% in the time span of only 10 years. Since hospitals are one of the number one environments that carry the MRSA virus, and infants are very susceptible to infection and disease making them very vulnerable to the MRSA virus. The amount of time a newborn stays in the hospital for MRSA compared to the amount of time an adult stays is doubled, and even sometimes quadrupled. This increases costs for the newborn’s family as well as for the hospital. Though more infants developed MRSA and had it for a longer period of time than many adults there was no correlation between mortality and MRSA. As stated in the report;…