MRSA colonization amongst patients of a small community hospital: a prevalence study


Carla Foolen, Eugene Landsbergen, Michelle Warren, Tony Morris, Dan Woods, Tyler Williamson, Meghan Doraty, Neil Drummond


Marta Shaw at, 403.210.9259


Canadian College of Family Physicians Janus Research Grant






Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is an important and increasing cause of hospital-acquired infection around the world. Little is known about the prevalence of MRSA carriage among patients treated at a rural hospital in the absence of an outbreak.


The aim is to examine the prevalence of MRSA colonization among patients admitted to a small rural community hospital and to investigate the rate of transmission occurring in hospital.


This study takes place at a small community hospital in rural Alberta with 13 Acute Care beds, 15 Long Term Care beds and an Emergency Department. The study will occur over a three month data collection period timed to exclude any known local MRSA outbreak. All inpatients admitted to the small community hospital for at least one overnight stay will be eligible for inclusion in the study. Patients will be swabbed from the nares by a participating physician. Once taken, swabs will be planted to Denim Blue Agar with suspected MRSA growth undergoing a mecA Screen Latex test. If positive, a Vancomycin Screen will be performed. The main outcome is the presence or absence of MRSA in the sample.


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